Bud Grant (born May 20, 1927) is best known in the United States as the legendary head coach of the American football team the Minnesota Vikings. He was the second (1967-83) and fourth (1985) head coach of the team. In Canada he is just as well known for his success with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League.
Bud Grant was born in Superior, Wisconsin. He attended the University of Minnesota. He starred in three sports for the Golden Gophers, American football, basketball, and baseball.
After leaving the University of Minnesota in 1949, he first played professional basketball with the NBA's Minneapolis Lakers, averaging 2.6 ppg in his two seasons. He was selected in the first round of the NFL's college draft in 1950 by the Philadelphia Eagles. In the 1952 season, his second with the Eagles, Grant ranked second in the NFL for receiving yardage, with 997 yards on 56 catches, including seven touchdowns.
At this time, playing in Canada was just as (if not more) lucritive as playing in the United States, so in 1953, Bud Grant signed with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the Canadian Football League. He played for the Blue Bombers until 1956 as an offensive end and was named a Western Division all-star three times. In 1956 Grant was made head coach of the Blue Bombers. He would remain the head coach of the Blue Bombers until 1966. During his stint as head coach, he led the team to six Grey Cup apperances, winning the championship an amazing four times.
Grant continued his coaching success in the National Football League. Desiring to be closer to home, Grant signed on as head coach of the Minnesota Vikings in 1967, taking over for original coach Norm Van Brocklin. In his second year, he led the team to a divisional championship. In 1969, he led the team to its first NFL Championship and their first appearance in the Super Bowl. The team lost that game to the American Football League champions Kansas City Chiefs. The Vikings would appear in 3 more Super Bowls under Grant and lose each one. However, he was the first coach to coach in four Super Bowls. Grant's team won 11 divisional championships between 1968 and 1980. Bud Grant retired after the 1983 season and was followed in the post by Les Steckel, who led the team in a miserable 3-13 season. Grant returned as coach for the Vikings in 1985 and then retired for a second time, succeeded by Jerry Burns.
Bud Grant is a member of both the Canadian Football Hall of Fame and the U.S. Pro Football Hall of Fame.