The Cali kid who came of age in the late 80s and early 90s came out in Texas Longhorns head coach Tom Herman in late February during a Q&A sessions with students when asked about his top five rappers.
The first name on his list — Dr. Dre.
Beyond the top three, Herman had trouble deciding from a group that included California’s own Snoop Dogg and Ice Cube.
Of course, Herman’s hip-hop interests also transcended the Death Row contingent, spanning the West Coast portion of the East-West rivalry that largely defined Herman's defining teenage years, with Tupac making the top three and Biggie Smalls earning mention among the next group jostling for the fourth and fifth stops on his list, as well as Drake and Nas.
Eminem also made the top three for Herman, a group that was easy for him to pick.
"If there's a better lyricist than Eminem? Come on, get out of here. There's not."
And his last stop also made an impact on his hip-hop choices, with Houston rappers Slim Thug and Paul Wall earning mention as some of Herman’s favorites.
Herman also noted the difference in talking about the best rappers and the best rap groups.
"It's just hard," he said. "Are we talking about groups? Are we talking about Wu-Tang Clan? Are we talking about Beastie Boys? Are we talking about Run-D.M.C.?"
Mostly, Herman said that his listening choices vary based on his mood, but it was fitting that when Herman was asked what he was listening to on the way over, it was Snoop and Dre that had come on the Sirius XM station tuned into by the head coach and wide receivers coach Drew Mehringer.
Once a Cali kid, always a Cali kid.