Ralph Wilson Foundation makes another significant donation to HOF

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The Ralph Wilson Jr. Foundation has announced a second $2.5 million grant to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio, that will go towards a holographic theater scheduled to open at the Hall this summer.

Wilson, who owned the Bills from 1960 until his death in 2014, was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2009. Wilson made a $2.5 million donation to the Hall of Fame to help build its research library in 2012. The research library is now named in his honor.

“This generous additional gift from the foundation is further evidence of the special appreciation Ralph had for the Pro Football Hall of Fame and its mission,” Hall of Fame president David Baker said.

The Hall of Fame and adjacent Fawcett Stadium are in the midst of an expansion and renovation project that will eventually include the Hall of Fame Village retail and entertainment center on the Hall’s grounds. Baker has said he hopes that project will include Canton getting the opportunity to host the NFL Draft in 2019 or 2020.

Earlier this week the NFL announced the Packers will play the Colts in the annual Hall of Fame Game. Those teams made for an easy choice as the traditional preseason opener will be played the night after Brett Favre, Tony Dungy and Marvin Harrison are inducted into the Hall of Fame.

15 responses to “Ralph Wilson Foundation makes another significant donation to HOF

  1. Not a Bills fan, but I admired Wilson as an owner and for keeping the Bills in a small market. He was a lot better than some of his uber greedy and corrupt fellow owners.

  2. I thought Wilson was a good owner also.

    Strangely enough, this gift is 100 times what he paid for the team, if I am not mistaken.

  3. granadafan says:
    Feb 17, 2016 4:40 PM
    Not a Bills fan, but I admired Wilson as an owner and for keeping the Bills in a small market. He was a lot better than some of his uber greedy and corrupt fellow owners.

    CORRECTION. Please ! He tried for years to move the team. Threatening to move the team for stadium improvements. How do you think fans felt with that hanging over them. He didn’t even live in the town! Then he sells them down the river to play games in Toronto! Get real…he deserves the Hall as much as I do.

  4. Ralph Wilson was inducted into the HOF before he betrayed the game with the lockout. No other owner involved in that action has been interred, and it’s safe to say Ralph wouldn’t have been if the HOF voters had known he was capable of stopping the game.

    Wilson was an enemy of the game and that’s all he’ll ever be. The HOF should strip Wilson of his status. return the money and tell the foundation to cram it.

  5. Wilson “settled” for Buffalo. He wanted to go to Miami but a bad experience with another money draining pro league made Miami say “No Thanks” to the AFL. Fact…

  6. Not sure where loumann gets his “facts” but he clearly missed all the years that Ralph stood up for small markets and held out against the NFL corporate machine financing mega palaces for franchises. He settled for modest improvements to the stadium that bears his name. While he did enter into an deal to play one game a year in Toronto under an agreement that ultimately was cancelled by both sides, not sure how that qualifies as “selling them down the river”. The fact that he wasn’t a Buffalo native and didn’t live in the city makes his loyalty even more remarkable. His post death endowments to Buffalo solidify his legacy as a great citizen no matter where he was from. I doubt loumann’s accomplishments stack up in any comparable way.

    And ebdug’s’ comment is to bizarre to even fathom. Ralph was one of 32 owners to unanimously ratify the lockout in 2011. The lockout led to a new CBA that the league has been operating under ever since. How is that destroying the game? He an original AFL owner and not only owner of the Bills but integral in keeping the Raiders afloat with loans to his friend Al Davis. I guarantee that the HOF voters could care less about the lockout, and that several of the owners (Robert Kraft anyone?) from all of 4 or 5 years ago will make it in as warranted.

  7. What a stupid waste of money. Like the NFL HoF cant get any money it needs from the NFL. This endowment should have stayed in Buffalo and gone to a worthy cause. The NFL HoF is not a worthy cause.

    But it probably gets his name on the theatre.

  8. abninf says:
    Feb 17, 2016 6:05 PM

    The need to open a separate wing just for the Dallas Cowboys players. They make up half the HOF.


    Hunstville Penal Facility was thinking the same thing.

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