Southwestern Oklahoma State University

Athletic Hall of Fame

Louis Mendoza

Mendoza was the top player on what many consider SWOSU’s best-ever football teams in 1977. Mendoza starred as a 225-pound linebacker and was the ringleader of a team that cruised through the regular season with an undefeated 10-0 record and advanced all the way to the NAIA Championship Game.

The NAIA championship, called the Apple Bowl, was played in the Kingdome in Seattle, Wash. where the Bulldogs met and lost 24-7 to future Lone Star Conference rival Abilene Christian University.

After graduating in 1979, Mendoza coached both at SWOSU as a graduate assistant and later at Mangum High School. He returned to his hometown of Amarillo where he served as an administrative assistant at Caprock High School. He came back to Oklahoma in 1988 and took an assistant football position at Clinton High School where he remains today. In Mendoza’s 20 years at Clinton, he, along with head head coach Mike Lee, has helped the Red Tornadoes to eight state titles, including the school’s 15th earlier this year.

Mendoza and his wife, Lynn, have four children, Ryan, Rodney and Kenzie Skinner and a 13 year-old son, Garrison Mendoza. They have two grandchildren, Trenton and Sydnie Skinner.