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Team Leach Scholarship Awarded During Mike Leach’s Book Signing

Special to 1340TheFan.com

By Chana Elgin

Mike Leach has helped us all understand how overeating and indulgence are not always bad.

On the Texas leg of his book signing tour, Leach stopped in Lubbock Tuesday offering autographs of his newly authored tell‐all, Swing Your Sword.

A line of an estimated 1,000 people formed outside of the South Plains Mall Barnes & Noble Bookstore with the first Leach supporters arriving at 10 a.m. for the scheduled 7 p.m. signing.

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The exiled former Red Raider head coach arrived 10 minutes ahead of schedule avoiding the anxious crowd by utilizing a side door. As the tan, slimmed down Leach stood before a swarm of media and Team Leach loyalists, a young man appeared at his side.

Short with his words, Leach introduced Keith Mauldin, a senior studying exercise sports science at Texas Tech, as the first recipient of the first annual Mike Leach Team Leach scholarship‐ a scholarship granted based on a students’ qualification of desire to pursue coaching as a profession.

“The scholarship was on their website,” Mauldin said. “It (the application) was easy to fill out and I’m grateful for Mr. Leach’s generosity.”

Leach’s foundation provided Mauldin, who accepted the check with his family, with $5,000 for each semester remaining in his education. Mauldin said he anticipates two more semesters until graduation.

Mauldin said he is a trainer for the Red Raider football team under the direction of head coach Tommy Tuberville and was a trainer for the team during the Leach administration.

“Tuberville has a different style of running practice,” he said, “but Leach always had his own style, we all knew that.”

Amongst those in attendance was former Texas Tech linebacker Brian Duncan and his 6’1″ frame that’s still built like a linebacker.

Duncan wore a Midnight Maneuvers Under Armor shirt from the 2008 season, an infamous Leach football practice held at its named time during the season. Duncan casually spoke to members of the media and lined crowd before the signing.

“I’m not in any position to comment outside of what I know about Coach as a person,” Duncan said.
“He’s a good guy and bottom line, he won games. I can absolutely credit where I am today in part to him.”

Barnes & Noble staff estimated several hundred books to have been sold and it was reported Leach had signed about 500 books 30 minutes into the scheduled signing. The bookstore was sold out of the sought‐after book by 4 p.m.  Also, the two Hastings locations in Lubbock sold out their allotment of Swing Your Sword before the book signing.

Duncan and Leach shared a hug and brief exchange of words before Duncan moved on to congratulate Mauldin on his scholarship.

The bookstore staff repeatedly reminded those assembled in a line that wrapped around the outside of the South Plains Mall of no personalization in signatures from Leach and nothing was allowed to be signed other than the book.

But when one supporter approached the table where Leach sat with copies of one of his other published works, the cookbook Fat Little Girlfriends, Leach couldn’t say ‘no’.

“Sure I’ll sign those,” Leach said reaching for his black Sharpie. “Selling these raises money for that
kid.”

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