O.A. “Bum” Phillips, one of the most colorful coaches in NFL history, has passed away. Phillips was 90.
“Bum is gone to Heaven,” his son, Wade, posted on Twitter, “loved and will be missed by all — great Dad, Coach, and Christian.”
Bum Phillips, who wore a cowboy hat on the sideline except when playing in a dome (since it technically was indoors), coached the Oilers from 1975 through 1980, leading Houston to a pair of AFC title games. He then coached the Saints from 1981 through 1985.
Wade has coached a trio of NFL teams. He currently serves as defensive coordinator with the Texans.
In 1980, after consecutive losses to the Steelers in Pittsburgh for a berth in the Super Bowl, Bum was defiant.
“One year ago we knocked on the door. This year we beat on the door,” Phillips said, via the Houston Chronicle. “Next year we’re gonna kick the sumbitch in.”
It didn’t happen, and the Texans are still trying to do what the Oilers were unable to accomplish.
Bum Phillips had been raising money to build a home for deaf children in Goliad, Texas. Contributions can be made to Bum Phillips Charities at 2981 S. Riverdale Lane, Goliad, Texas, 77963 or at bumphillipscharities.com.
We extend our condolences to the Phillips family and to Coach Phillips’ friends, colleagues, and players.