OXNARD, Calif. – Cowboys wide receiver Terrance Williams has plenty of current coaches on this staff to help him through the daily grind of training camp.
But he got a visit from someone who will always be more than just a coach on Tuesday.
Former Baylor head coach Art Briles, who not only recruited Williams to Waco, but coached for five seasons, showed up in Oxnard to get a closer look at the Cowboys No. 2 receiver.
Briles was recently fired by Baylor following the school’s investigation stemming from sexual assault issues involving Baylor students, particular his former players. While he expects to be coaching again as soon as 2017, Briles said he’s taking the opportunity to visit many former players on his own personal training camp tour over the last couple of weeks.
“I’ve never had the chance to get out and make the rounds. It’s been really refreshing to me,” Briles said following the Cowboys’ practice. “It’s hard to not do something you love to do. (But) this gives me a chance to see a lot of guys I’ve had the privilege of coaching, and Terrance being one of them. It’s been good for me. It’s hard but it’s what I love to do. I love to coach football. It’s been fun to be on the field.”
On Monday, Briles came up from Los Angeles, where he visited the Rams and former players Case Keenum and Bryce Hagar. Last week, Briles made stops in Tennessee, Cincinnati and Cleveland, where many former Baylor players are standing out, including Robert Griffin III and rookies Josh Gordon and Spencer Drango.
Not only did Briles visit with Williams, but rookie tight end Rico Gathers, who was a standout on Baylor’s basketball team and toyed with the idea of trying out for the football team, but never did until he went to the NFL.
Briles said he expects to get another coaching job by “November or December” and didn’t rule out the chance to coach in the NFL.
“My saying now is I’m not going to get ready, but stay ready. I’m getting ready for the next adventure, “ Briles said. “As long as I get a whistle around my neck, it doesn’t’ matter what level. It’s something I love to do and to be around the field and be around players and coaches, the Jones (family) and Jason has made me feel very welcome.”
After practice, Jerry Jones avoided any questions about the situation at Baylor specifically, but said Briles has a “standing” invitation to come to any practice, and has for many years, especially when his daughter, Jancy, was a member of the public relations department.
“I think he would be a great an asset to an organization – at any level,” Jones said. “He’s a football coach, really understands talent, can evaluate talent. In his particular case, certainly as a head coach in college, he has a great understanding of high school football.
“And I would vouch for him as a person. He’s top quality as a person. I would want my grandson, if he had the chance, to play for him.”