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Tom Landry Scouted by Texas to Head Up State’s Anti-Drug Push

From Associated Press

Former Dallas Cowboys coach Tom Landry could be the new anti-drug czar of Texas, if Gov. Bill Clements has his way.

Clements reportedly is pursuing Landry for a newly created, senior Administration job to coordinate the state’s anti-drug efforts through all state agencies dealing with drug problems.

“Governor Clements has a longtime friendship with Tom Landry,” Clements’ top aide, Reggie Bashur, told the Dallas Times Herald on Sunday. “The governor has tremendous respect for the coach, and he has said that he would like to talk with coach Landry and see what type of public service activity he might want to be involved in.”

“Right now, it’s in the very preliminary discussion,” Bashur told the Associated Press.

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Released From Cowboys

Landry, 64, who was released from the Cowboys last month after 29 years as its only coach, is vacationing in Palm Springs until the end of March and was not available for comment.

“Texas spends about $50 million on anti-drug efforts, which are dispersed throughout a number of agencies,” Bashur told the AP. “Coach Landry, as a drug czar, would become the leading spokesman in terms of the education and informational programs and would help in terms of coordination.”

The state’s drug prevention, treatment and education programs are now administered by the state’s Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse. A 1988 study showed that the state spent less per capita to fund drug and alcohol programs than any other state surveyed, behind California, at $2.90, and New York, at $10.70.

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Legislators, acknowledging the lack of adequate drug programs, are pushing for millions of dollars in new drug programs as a means of cutting at the roots of crime.

sh Logical Choice

Dallas businessman Charles Terrell, chairman of the Texas Board of Corrections and chairman of the governor’s Texas Criminal Justice Task Force, said he was unaware that Clements was seeking Landry for the job, but said Landry is a logical choice.

“I could not imagine a finer choice than Tom Landry. He stands for all that is right in our society,” Terrell told the Times Herald. “If it’s not this position, there should be a position of leadership for him in the state or federal government--if we can get him to take it.”

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Landry, a staunch conservative and evangelical Christian, has campaigned in recent elections for a number of Republican candidates, including Clements.


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