IQFB Profile: Bud Adams
Bud Adams (Kenneth Stanley Adams) was born in 1923 in Oklahoma. After serving in the military in World War II, Adams settled in Houston and made his fortune in the petroleum business, eventually owning a number of automobile dealerships as well.
In 1959, Adams made an attempt to but the struggling Chicago Cardinals of the NFL, having been denied this opportunity he went on to partner with Lamar Hunt in the forming of the competing AFL and founded the Houston Oilers. The Oilers were one of the most successful AFL franchises, winning the first two championships, and he would eventually see his name listed in the AFL Hall-of-Fame. Adams, along with Hunt, played a major role in the AFL-NFL merger that combined the upstart league with its more established competitor.
Though popular and successful again in the late 1970’s and late 1980’s, the Oilers would never achieve the same level of success in the NFL as they did in the old AFL. Following disputes with the city of Houston over both the condition of their home stadium the Astrodome and a desire for a brand new stadium, Adams would move the team to Tennessee for the 1996 season. Upon arriving in Tennessee, the Oilers would have a rough start playing in the Liberty Bowl for their first year, at Vanderbilt University for their second year, before finally settling into their brand new stadium in their third year in Tennessee. The Titans (as they became known by this time) made the franchise’s first and so far only Super Bowl appearance following the 1999 season, their first in their new stadium in Nashville.
Adams saw the Oilers come into existence in the AFL, navigated through the merger with the NFL, and then relocated from Houston to Tennessee. Bud Adams has definitely left his mark on professional football.