By Bridget Sjoberg | Staff Writer
This homecoming weekend will provide a unique situation for Baylor President Dr. Linda Livingstone and First Gentleman Brad Livingstone. Baylor is playing Oklahoma State for Saturday’s homecoming game — the Livingstones’ alma mater.
The Livingstones met at Oklahoma State University through their involvement in the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) and both played basketball and received undergraduate and graduate degrees at the university. Despite their deep appreciation for their time and experiences at Oklahoma State, Brad Livingstone said they will always be Bears at heart.
“Oklahoma State is our alma mater, and we hope that they win every single game except one — and that’s when they play Baylor,” Brad Livingstone said. “We bleed OSU orange, but are Baylor Bears now and are always behind Baylor. They’re both phenomenal schools, however, and we’re very excited OSU is here, but hope for a Baylor victory.”
President Livingstone agrees and enjoys the fun atmosphere and friendly competition that results when the two schools play each other in football.
“We always love it when Oklahoma State and Baylor play each other,” Dr. Livingstone said. “Of course, we cheer always for Baylor, but we have so many good friends at OSU. I’m looking forward to a win, and it’s always fun on homecoming game day to have alumni back on campus.”
President Livingstone is particularly excited to reunite with some of her former Oklahoma State basketball teammates and her family members.
“At the game Saturday, two of my former basketball teammates at OSU will be with us, and some of my family is coming down as well,” Dr. Livingstone said. “There will probably be a few people in OSU orange in the president’s suite, but they’re dear friends and wonderful family. We get to be excited about cheering for Baylor, but also see some good friends from OSU.”
President Livingstone described her experience at Oklahoma State as extremely positive and believes that her time at the university provided a foundation for leadership roles she has pursued in higher education.
“I had an amazing experience at Oklahoma State — I played basketball there, and that was so important in helping me develop leadership skills and learning how to work with a team and people from different backgrounds and experiences,” Dr. Livingstone said. “I received my bachelor’s, master’s and PhD from there and had so many great faculty and friends from that experience. It was important in shaping my early academic career and building a foundation for where I am today.”
Brad Livingstone said he also shares a deep appreciation for his time at Oklahoma State, but he sees Baylor as a place that has truly become home for him.
“Between my wife and I, we have five degrees from Oklahoma State,” Brad Livingstone said. “We spent a lot of time at OSU but have actually spent more time at Baylor. We were here for 11 years — from 1991 to 2002. We’re back at Baylor now and love Waco and Baylor. This is home for us and we really enjoy being back.”
President Livingstone appreciates the unique experience that Baylor has provided her and continues to provide for students looking to receive a higher education with a Christian mission.
“When I came to Baylor, it was the first time I had been in a Christian education environment,” Dr. Livingstone said. “It really helped me understand the value of Christian higher education. As I went away for several years before ultimately coming back, I realized what a special place Baylor was. When I had the opportunity to return as president, I couldn’t think of a better place to come back to. Baylor has such a unique mission and we’re really blessed to be here.”
Along with the football game between Baylor and Oklahoma State, President Livingstone and Brad Livingstone said they are excited to participate in many of the week’s upcoming homecoming activities and traditions.
“Homecoming is just so exciting,” Brad Livingstone said. “There’s no such thing as a fair-weather Baylor fan — people come back because they love Baylor and what it stands for. Baylor fans are here through thick and thin. All of the traditions and activities make Baylor a very special place, and we can’t wait to be a part of it.”
President Livingstone said she hopes that students and members of the Baylor community engage in and support homecoming events occurring throughout the weekend.
“We love all of the homecoming activities — the bonfire, Singspiration, the parade and Pigskin — we’re doing it all,” President Livingstone added. “Everyone can find something to enjoy during homecoming weekend.”