Gene Keady HOF finalist

Maybe Sutton’s most accomplished ex-assistant?


Not really. It’s Jim Counce. How many lives has Jimmy saved? Lots more victories. Daily.


Agreed. Saved my dad.


He saved my sister in law. Excellent point.

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I think a couple more of Eddie’s players are also physicians (Rickey Medlock comes to mind), but they weren’t on his coaching staff and Rickey isn’t a cardiac surgeon, I don’t think.

Rickey retired. He was a retina specialist. The best, apparently. His practice was in Little Rock but he traveled to north Arkansas to reach a lot of folks. Really cool. He did a lot of philanthropy and was key in Jim Elder scholarship fund.

I needed a retina specialist about a year ago. Fortunately there’s a very good one here in Wilmington. I noticed severe floaters at noon on a Thursday, and by 2 pm on Friday I was in Dr. Westra’s office getting a retinal detachment fixed.

Weirdly enough, Dr. Westra is an adjunct professor at the new medical school in Fort Smith. Has he ever been to Fort Smith? No idea. I need to remember to ask him at my next followup.

Was Jimmy an assistant for Eddie at one point? If so, I’d sure forgotten that.

Bill Self may take issue with this.

Yep. He played for AIA one season after graduating, then was an assistant to Sutton in 1981 and 1982.

I never will forget, one evening after a late night working at the athletic department, I decided to treat myself to a steak dinner, solo of course. This was during Jimmy’s time as an assistant; I think he had actually replaced Pat Foster on the staff. Jimmy and Kathy were at the same restaurant and asked me to join them at their table. They didn’t have to do that and I appreciated it.

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