Louisiana Tech Honors Longtime Team Physician and Notable Orthopedist Dr. Bundrick
April 2, 2016
RUSTON, La. - There was a touchdown at Joe Aillet Stadium Saturday, followed by a celebration. But it didn't involve football and was organized by NBA Hall of Fame member Karl Malone.
Louisiana Tech University proclaimed Saturday to be Dr. William S. Bundrick Day and honored the long-time LA Tech team physician with a celebration in his honor.
The touchdown? Bundrick traveled to Ruston from his hometown Shreveport by helicopter courtesy Pafford Air One with the helicopter landing in the C Lot around Joe Aillet Stadium.
The Club Level of the Davison Athletics Complex was packed with what can only be described as a living history of Louisiana Tech Athletics as just a small fraction of the lives that Dr. Bundrick has touched were on hand to honor a living legend.
Malone, the Master of Ceremonies and main organizer for the event, said the event was years in the making and vastly overdue. He had a bust made of Dr. Bundrick that will be installed outside the Joe Aillet Field House and Dr. William Bundrick Sports Medicine Training Room.
Dr. Bundrick has been affiliated with Louisiana Tech Athletics as the team doctor for over 46 years. Former Louisiana Tech assistant coach Pat Collins asked him to fill in when the previous team doctor could no longer serve in that capacity.
"Like he would do tens of thousands of times in his life, Dr. B said `Yes I will,'" Malone said.
A Louisiana Tech graduate, Bundrick was originally recruited by legendary football coach Bear Bryant to Texas A&M and spent his freshman year in College Station.
"The great state of Texas called him away but he quickly returned to the Promise Land of Louisiana," said Dr. Edward "Eddie" Anglin, one of three main presenters at Saturday's ceremony.
Dr. Bundrick went on to letter in football the next three years at Louisiana Tech, serving as team captain and leading the Bulldogs to a 9-1 record in his senior year of 1959. He would eventually work his way through medical school, set up his practice in Shreveport, began serving as LA Tech's team doctor after Coach Pat Collins' plea and the rest is history.
Since then, he has had a positive impact on countless student-athletes, coaches, administrators and alumni of Louisiana Tech.
"Dr. B gave me the best advice I ever could have received as a young man," Louisiana Tech assistant athletics director for character education Ed Jackson recalled. "He told me, `Remember this -- never let your present affect your future.' That advice has stuck with me to this very day.
Former Louisiana Tech athletics director Jim Oakes called Dr. Bundrick, "one of the most outstanding mentors in my life."
"His loyalty to Louisiana Tech has been unparalleled. He truly is one of Tech's greatest unsung heroes," Oakes added.
Malone emphasized the positive influence that Dr. Bundrick has had on his life and how much of a close friend the orthopedist is.
"Every year before the start of the [NBA] season, I would come home to visit my mother," Malone said. "But it wasn't right unless I flew into Shreveport and spent two nights at Dr. B's house."
LA Tech athletics director Tommy McClelland pointed out the numerous professional athletes that Dr. Bundrick had an impact on such as former Bulldog greats Malone, Paul Millsap, Tim Rattay, Terry Bradshaw, Fred Dean, Willie Roaf and more.
Dr. Les Guice, President of Louisiana Tech University, recalled Dr. Bundrick's work with the athletic teams when he was a student at Louisiana Tech.
Following a standing ovation after the unveiling of Dr. Bundrick's bust, the longtime team doctor was at a loss for words.
"Now I know why I left Texas A&M," Dr. Bundrick quipped.
He will begin his 47th year as the Bulldogs' team physician when Louisiana Tech opens the 2016 season at Arkansas on Sept. 3 in Fayetteville, Arkansas.
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