Monday, October 21, 2013

Titans Owner Bud Adams Passes Away

The end of the "Old School" NFL owner is close at hand.

One of the AFL owners (pre-AFC) and current owner of the Tennessee Titans, Bud Adams passed away over the weekend at his Houston home.

Bud Adams was 90-years old.

Adams signed on to buy and run the Houston Oilers at the beginning of the AFL, which started playing in competition with the NFL in 1960. The two leagues would eventually merge in 1970.

Adams popularity in his hometown, Houston soared in the 70's as the Oilers rode star RB Earl Campbell and coach Bum Phillips to multiple conference championships, though they never played in a Super Bowl.

However, that popularity ended quickly when Adams made the decision, after years of flirtation, to leave his home town and move his franchise to Nashville. A move that shocked the people of Nashville almost as much as it did the people of Houston.

He cut all ties and kept the Oilers name while transitioning the team in Nashville to become the Tennessee Titans in 1996.

As someone who was living--and working in Nashville at the time of the move, it was a surreal experience. I actually attended a press conference on a cold February night in 1996 at the Nashville mayor's office to make the "announcement". I didn't believe my assignment manager when I was given the task.

Adams finally got his Super Bowl wish in 1999-2000, when the Titans won the AFC Championship game only to lose a nailbiter to the St. Louis Rams.

He'll be remembered by the NFL as one of their most unique and in their minds loyal owners, ever.

An odd bird by any recollection, in his later (last couple) of years, Adams may very well be most remembered for this in 2009:

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