this is one vol grad who will always remember branndon fondly. many a time i wish he could have come to tennessee sooner or later than he did (trying to beat out peyton manning is not an easy proposition). but, when he played, he was remarkable. one other thing i will always be grateful for, his leading the aggies to victory over number one nebraska in the b-12 championship in 98 (paved the way for the vol's championship). thanks for the memories, branndon. you were a great one.
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Aggie Flashback with Branndon Stewart
May 1, 2012
Notes from "Aggie Flashback" with Branndon Stewart* It’s always exciting to hear the highlights of the 1998 Big 12 Championship game broadcasted by Dave South. He’s heard it many times, but it’s always good.
* If he wouldn’t have been a part of that comeback, he probably would always have been known as the guy who transferred from Tennessee.
* While he was at A&M, they didn’t throw the ball too much, but during that game they got in the zone and guys kept getting open, so the ball kept getting thrown to them. Throwing the ball that much was fun, and he thought that Kansas State was leaving guys open on purpose at times.
* The first touchdown that was part of the comeback was when the guys started to see the light a little bit. The team then got the fumble recovery and at that point, people started being convinced that A&M was going to win the game. By that time, the game didn’t feel like a comeback, but more of a time to have fun doing something they knew would work. The A&M players were more into the game than the Kansas State players were, and that helped make the fourth quarter comeback a big turning point.
* Shane Lechler is a phenomenal athlete that can do anything. He’s a natural at everything he does and his success doesn’t come as a surprise. Peyton Manning is a smart player that doesn’t get hit as often as most quarterbacks, and that has contributed to the longevity of his career in the NFL so far. Lechler is possibly the best punter to ever play the game and thinks he could play until he was 50 years old.
* The University of Tennessee is a great football school and back when he was there, the SEC was just as exciting of a conference as it is now. He really liked the school and the city of Knoxville and thought that he would have a great opportunity to make a name for himself as a Volunteer. When he got there, both he and Peyton Manning were thrown into the mix at the same time after the starting quarterback was injured. After that, Manning and himself rotated in and out of games until the coaching staff chose Manning to be the starter. At the end of that season he decided to make a change, and after loving A&M for a while, it was a no-brainer on where to go after leaving Tennessee.
* He loves A&M’s move to the SEC and thinks it’s a great thing for the university. The fans that are able to make the road trips to the SEC schools are going to see a big difference in the venues and the involvement of the fans at each school. The atmosphere around those games is a lot of fun and has only improved since he was at Tennessee. The competition is going to be tough, but that should help A&M in recruiting as well.
*He and Baylor head coach Art Briles, who coached him at Stephenville High School, are still good friends and keep in contact with one another. The two of them have been taking jabs at one another through the conference realignment, but it’s all been in good fun.
* When he graduated from A&M, he moved to Austin and has been in the software industry ever since. He is currently the president of a software company in Austin called, Promolabs. He is also the father of boy-girl twins and is married to a TCU Horned Frog. He has no complaints about his life and loves living in Austin.
* He is currently working on a personal project that matches young athletes to different people who give private lessons. It can be hard sometimes for parents to match up someone with their child to develop the weaknesses in their kid’s game. There are a ton of athletes out there that aren’t going to become professionals and what better way for them to stay around the thing they love than to give private lessons to kids. A website called coachcrowd.com is being developed to match the kids to the athletes and make it easier for parents to find the right coach for their kid.
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