Legendary Minnesota Vikings head coach and Hall of Famer Bud Grant has died at the age of 95

One moment summed up Bud Grant and his Minnesota legend, and it came long after he’d finished coaching.

In 2016, the Minnesota Vikings played a wild card playoff game against the Seattle Seahawks. It was an outdoor game before the Vikings’ new indoor stadium was finished and the temperature was six degrees below zero. The wind chill was 25 degrees below zero. At the time, it was the third coldest playoff game in NFL history.

Grant, who was 88 at the time, came into midfield for the pre-game coin toss in short sleeves.

Grant was tough and that’s a big reason he was a great coach for the Vikings. He died Friday morning at the age of 95, the team said.

Grant remained active in the Minnesota area long after he was done coaching. And no one will forget the day he wiped off the nagging cold in a polo shirt.

Bud Grant was a multisport star

The only thing missing from Grant’s resume was a Super Bowl championship. That was a big part of his football history, but not the only thing he should be remembered for.

Grant went to the University of Minnesota. In Minnesota, he won nine college letters as a standout in football, basketball and baseball. He was born in Wisconsin but would become a big part of Minnesota lore.

In 1950, Grant was a first-round NFL draft pick for the Philadelphia Eagles and a fourth-round pick for the NBA’s Minneapolis Lakers. Grant played 96 games for the Lakers in two NBA seasons. He was part of the 1950 Lakers NBA championship team and appeared in 11 playoff games that season. He then went to the NFL and the Eagles for the 1951 season. In his first season he played defensively. In his sophomore season, he moved to receiver on offense and became the first receiver in Eagles history to have 200 yards in a game.

Grant went to the Canadian Football League after that season, where he played four more seasons with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. He also started his coaching career. His time as a coach would overshadow his multi-sport career as a professional athlete.

Grant was a Hall of Fame coach

Grant was the CFL coach for 10 seasons. He won the Gray Cup four times, in 1958, 1959, 1961 and 1962. When the Vikings were looking for their second coach in team history, they hired Grant.

Grant coached the Vikings from 1967 to 1983, then returned in 1985 for a final season as Minnesota coach. He never coached any other NFL team.

The Vikings had great success with Grant. Minnesota won 11 division championships. They had four Super Bowl appearances. Grant’s last NFL record was 158-96-5. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Grant’s record in Super Bowls is also part of his legacy as the Vikings went 0-4 in it.

He is still fondly remembered in Minnesota. For years he had an annual flea market at his home, which attracted Viking fans and the media.

Grant was a legend from his days as a multi-sport collegiate star to his triumph as a Vikings coach and even beyond his coaching days. He will forever be a part of Minnesota history.


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