SPORTS

Blue Bombers erect statue to legendary CFL and NFL coach Bud Grant

10/23/2014 03:09 EDT | Updated 12/23/2014 05:59 EST
WINNIPEG - Bud Grant, a coaching legend in both the CFL and NFL, was honoured Thursday with a bronze statue outside the main entrance to Investors Group Field, the home of the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

Grant coached the Bombers for 10 seasons starting in 1957, took them to six Grey Cups and won four.

He then coached the NFL's Minnesota Vikings for 18 seasons, including four Super Bowl appearances.

He had a combined regular-season coaching record of 260-152-7 and is one of the most successful professional football coaches of all time.

As a player, he was selected in both the NFL and NBA Draft and played two seasons with the Minneapolis Lakers before switching to the NFL with the Philadelphia Eagles.

He moved north to the CFL over money at a time when the NFL didn't pay as well as the CFL and played with the Bombers until 1956.

He played defensive end, wide receiver and offensive end over his professional career.

"It's a great tribute," Grant, 87, said at the unveiling of the bronze statue that shows him in the trademark tan raincoat he wore to so many Bomber games.

"Most statues of this variety are (erected) when people are dead. I'm not dead yet. It's a pleasure to be here."

He lives in Minnesota but has maintained his friendships in Manitoba where he would often return to enjoy his other passion, duck hunting.

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