The Immortal Ten
Among Baylor's many rich traditions is an event that has had a lasting impact on the University and its athletic department; the story of the Immortal Ten, one of America's first sports tragedies.
On Jan. 22, 1927, coach Ralph Wolf was taking his first Baylor basketball team to play a game in Austin against the University of Texas.
Rain hampered the vision of the chartered bus driver as debris from the road sprayed the windshield of the bus. In Round Rock, Texas, just miles from the team's arrival in Austin, a speeding train from the I&GA Railroad Company rammed into the side of the bus at a railway crossing near the center of the city. Ten of the 21 players, coaches and fans in the Baylor party that traveled on the bus that day were killed.
The Immortal Ten are honored each year during Homecoming, when freshman hear the tragic story and participate in a candlelight remembrance ceremony.
On June 22, 2007, a monument was erected on campus in the new Traditions Square to honor the Immortal Ten.
There was a hero of the accident, Jame Clyde "Abe" Kelly. Kelly, who was captain-elect of the 1927 football team, saw the train just before impact and pushed his roommate, Weir Washman, out of the bus' window. Kelly is credited with saving the life of his best friend at the greatest expense to himself. Kelly was one of the 10 who died in the collision.
Other who did not survive the wreck were William Winchester, W.E. Murray, Merle Dudley, Sam Dillow, Jack Castellaw, L.R. "Ivey" Foster, Bob Hailey, R.L. Hannah and James Walker.
As a result of the tragedy, the remainder of the 1927 season was canceled, and the first overpass in Texas was constructed in Round Rock.