January 3, 2017

Kenneth Stanley "Bud" Adams

   Bud Adams was born Jan. 3, 1923 in Bartlesville, Okla. He played football, basketball and baseball at Culver Military Academy, and graduated in 1940. He attended Menlo College in California then transferred to the engineering department at the University of Kansas, where he also lettered in football. He joined the U.S. Naval Reserve in 1942 and was later sent overseas, assigned to a carrier unit, where he served as aviation engineering officer. He was discharged from the Navy in 1946, the same year he started ADA Oil Company. Always interested in sports, eventually he would own professional baseball and basketball teams, and was involved in boxing. Football went to the front burner in 1959, when Adams launched Houston's AFL franchise while Lamar Hunt started one in Dallas. Until his death he remained owner, chairman of the board, and president and CEO of the franchise that became the Titans in 1999 after a controversial departure from Houston.

   The Oilers were among the dominant AFL teams in the 1960s, playing in four championship games, and winning titles in 1960 and '61. In 1970, when the AFL merged with the long-established NFL, the Oilers continued to have success, making the playoffs 10 times. The Oilers played their final season in Houston in 1996. In 1997, Adams moved them to the Volunteer State, where they were called the Tennessee Oilers while playing home games at the Liberty Bowl in Memphis ('97) and Vanderbilt Stadium ('98) in Nashville. In 1999, as finishing touches were placed on a new downtown stadium in Nashville, Adams changed the team nickname to Titans. The inaugural Titans team made an electrifying run to Super Bowl XXXIV in Atlanta, where it lost to the St. Louis Rams. The night before Super Bowl XLVI in January of 2012, the NFL honored Adams for his efforts in supporting U.S. service members and veterans. He was the first recipient of the Salute to Service Award presented by USAA, the league's official military appreciation sponsor.

   He was inducted into the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame in 2006 and the Texas Sports Hall of Fame in '08. In 2008, Adams received the inaugural Lamar Hunt Award for Professional Football, which recognized his vision and his role in helping the NFL reach preeminent status. Adams was nominated for the Hall of Fame as a special contributor, and up until his death had been working on several prominent NFL committees, including Finance, Hall of Fame, and Legislative and Audit. He was one of only four NFL owners to reach the 350-win plateau, a milestone he shared with Ralph Wilson (Buffalo Bills), Dan Rooney (Pittsburgh Steelers) and Al Davis (Oakland/Los Angeles Raiders). Bud Adams passed away peacefully on October 21, 2013 of natural causes at his home in Houston.

29° 44.304, -095° 36.517

Section 400
Forest Park Westheimer

No comments:

Post a Comment