Today in Sports History, February 25th

Published: Feb 25, 2014 10:29am EST
By taylorzanew, Sports Writer for Konsume Sports

Please Note: This article was updated Feb 25, 2014 @ 10:52am EST

 

The front page of the Dallas Morning News read, “Jones buys Cowboys, fires Landry”. National Football League commissioner Pete Rozelle said, “This is like Lombardi's death.” That’s how big of a deal this was, not just to the Dallas fan’s but for everyone who loved “America’s Team”.

Today, 25 years ago, Jerry Jones held his first press conference as the new owner of the Dallas Cowboys and boy was it a doozy. Firing the only coach the Cowboys have ever known and naming University of Miami coach Jimmy Johnson to succeed him.

The news conference was awkward and somber. Tex Schramm looking like he just saw the end of the notebook, trying to find the right words to say after letting go a man he trusted for 29 years. It was just unheard of, Landry and fired didn’t seem to make sense together. The Cowboys offices were immediately inundated with calls in defense of Landry.

Jerry has since admitted he wished he had handled things differently that day. “If I had a chance to do it over again, I would’ve waited a year and just got my feet on the ground a little bit more and probably just gone with the staff that we had and then later made the ultimate change that I made,” Jones said, via Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.

Jerry also admitted that H.R. Bum Bright offered to fire Landry for him. "He did insist that, 'I should make this change. You shouldn't. You should have a clean slate. I will make the change,'" Jones said. "I wanted to and felt that it was pretty obvious that changes were being made because I was taking the team, and I wanted to look coach Landry in the eye, visit with him about that rather than having it done just through the actual purchase closing procedure that would normally come. But that would've been something that when I look back at hindsight, I could've taken Bum up on his offer to make those changes."

Jimmy was always going to be Jerry’s guy, he has always said as much, and we all know how Jimmy worked out. Until Jimmy and Jerry didn’t work out but that’s another story for another day.

Landry won two Super Bowl titles, 5 NFC titles, 13 Divisional titles, and a 270-178-6 record, the 3rd most wins of all time for an NFL coach. His 20 career playoff victories are the most of any coach in NFL history. He was named the NFL Coach of the Year in 1966 and the NFC Coach of the Year in 1975. He also had 20 consecutive winning seasons an NFL record.

Landry's success during nearly three decades of coaching made him a shoo-in for his induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1990, less than two years after his last game. Landry was also inducted into the "Ring of Honor" at Texas Stadium in 1993.

Where would the Cowboy’s, and football for that matter, be without Tom Landry?


 

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