Which Texans will make the Excellent Eight? Voting is now underway among the Lone Star 16. With the first two rounds in the books, we are on track to vote in the Championship on Texas Independence Day. You don’t have to have voted in the preliminary rounds to participate now — you can join the voting at any time.
Let’s take a look at the best matchup in each of our four categories.
MUSICIANS AND THE ARTS
Willie Nelson vs. Stevie Ray Vaughan
Willie Nelson has absolutely dominated in the first two rounds, winning by an average of over 95% — though he also enjoyed the benefits of being a No. 1 seed. He’ll face his first formidable competition in Stevie Ray Vaughan, who had no trouble dispatching Lyle Lovett in the second round. Will Willie continue to roll?
ACTORS AND ATHLETES
Tommy Lee Jones vs. Earl Campbell
Though Texan to the core, Tommy Lee Jones has shown he should not have been a No. 1 seed in this category, struggling early in the first round against Richard Linklater before pulling away and barely defeating Babe Didrikson Zaharias in Round Two. Earl Campbell crushed the first round and took down heavyweight Nolan Ryan in the second. This is likely where the taciturn actor bows out.
POLITICS AND HISTORY
Barbara Jordan vs. Ann Richards
Two Democratic giants go toe-to-toe, with No. 1 seed Jordan facing her first true test in local favorite Ann Richards. Jordan might have the more impressive resume, but Richards has home-court advantage. Only one will emerge the winner by the end of the night.
Audie Murphy vs. Hallie Stillwell
Hallie Stillwell has been the Cinderella of the tournament, defeating Mary Kay Ash and Red Adair by impressive margins. It would be the upset of the tournament if she could continue her run against No. 1 seed Audie Murphy, who has been the only unquestionable favorite in the chaotic Wildcard category.