It's time for another "Where Are They Now" installment, featuring a prominent member of our North Texas Letterwinners Association Board of Directors. There's no doubt that in my time spent working for the athletic department at UNT, one person stands out as an advocate for the value of a letterwinners organization. The past president of our board lettered in 1984, '85 and '86, accumulating 325 tackles from the linebacker position. And ever since he graduated, Lance White has given back to his alma mater. He has done so financially, but also personally in terms of time and persistence in gathering former players together.
White finished his collegiate career as North Texas' fifth all-time leader in tackles and was inducted into the North Texas Athletic Hall of Fame in 2005. He was a standout linebacker for Corky Nelson and earned All-Southland Conference selections in 1984 and 1986. White also was named honorable mention All-America by the Associated Press.
A key member of the 1983 Southland Conference championship team and two-time defensive captain for the Eagles, White led North Texas in tackles in 1984 and 1985. He recorded a career-high 126 tackles in 1984 that tied for the third most in a single-season by a North Texas player. White was also named the Southland Conference Defensive Player of the Week once and was on the Eagle Honor Roll, Academic Honor Roll and Dean's List his senior season. The Fort Worth, Texas, native graduated from North Texas in 1986 and has done well very well for himself since.
I had the pleasure of doing a little tailgating with White this past weekend in Fayetteville, Arkansas before the big 44-17 victory over the Razorbacks. As usual, White was there to make sure old friends and teammates had a good time. We caught up on some "Where Are They Now" questions and memories:
What coach made the biggest impact on you and why?
Chuck Mills. Coach Mills was my linebacker coach for several years. He was a very tough coach and I really didn't appreciate him at the time, but once my career was complete I realized that he was the guy who pushed me so I could be the best I could be. He and I are close friends now and almost like family.
What's your favorite game-day memory from your playing days?
I actually have a couple. As a sophomore, while playing McNeese State at Fouts, I caught a fumble in midair and ran it back for a touchdown 92 yards. That was pretty cool, but after that I did not play my best game because I was so winded. The best game and most exciting game was against TCU in 1986. We played them real close in 1985 but in '86 we beat them. It came down to the last play of the game and we stopped them on our 10-yard line. Very exciting and a great win for UNT. Remember, we were Division 1-AA then and had a lot less scholarships than they did.
We had some great years and games during my time and played some big schools very well. I believe OSU (Oklahoma State) was ranked #2 or #3 in the nation in '85 and they beat us 10-9 and we missed three field goals during the game.
What was your first job out of school?
After I graduated in 1986, I went to work for a former letterman and fellow linebacker, Frank Babb, as a custom home builder. Greg Carter, our quarterback in 1983, also worked for him at the time. It was a great opportunity and a great learning experience for me.
Explain your job path and current title/position.
After working for Frank, I worked for several other custom home builders in the DFW area until I started my own home building business in 1992 (White Castle Custom Homes). I had some successful years and in 2001 after 911 the economy took a down turn and I limped out of the building business. I didn't move too far out of it because I went into the mortgage business and started doing construction loans for builders. I managed the one time close department for a bank in the DFW area until 2009 when I started the business that I have today, Green Eagle Roofing and Construction. As you can tell, I love North Texas and the Eagles and it shows with the name. We do construction all over the country, but we really love working with fellow UNT alumni in Denton and throughout the metroplex.
Lance is, as previously stated, active and engaged with our NTLA board and is a fixture at many events, including our tailgates before home games. You will normally see him with his wife Carmen. His family includes Carmen's two kids, Chase Burris and Colton Burris as well as White's daughter, Whitney White Johnson and her husband Brady Johnson, and his son Colby White. His father and mother (Bill and Pat White) both got their masters degrees from UNT, and his dad was an assistant basketball coach under Dan Spika from 1968 thru 1971.
A Mean Green legacy for sure!return to news page