genesis.jpgIn the beginning God's football team was placed on this earth. It happened 52 years ago today. The events leading up to that birth are as interesting as the team itself; as storied as the legends who have worn our colors.
It almost didn't happen. Clint Murchison had tried since the original Dallas Texans of 1952 to own a professional football team in Dallas. He tried to buy the Chicago Cardinals. Imagine if he had been successful and we acquired that sorry legacy.
Even more galling to some, he almost acquired the Washington Redskins. That deal fell apart with Redskins owner George Preston Marshall demanding 10 years of autonomy as he ran the team. Can you imagine the Grand Wizard in charge of our team? Worse yet, they might have still been the Redskins with those awful colors.
In 1959, Murchison hired Tex Schramm to be his General Manager. Murchison's partner was a prominent Texas attorney named Bedford Wynn, a proud Texas Longhorn alum. He originally chose the name Steers for the team. Tex Schramm immediately saw the error of that idea. Can't you just picture rival fans imitating Sergeant Foley?
Tex changed the name to Rangers. Right before the 1960 college draft in late 1959 Tex signed Don Meredith and Don Perkins to "futures" contracts. Their contracts were with the Dallas Rangers. The problem was the team didn't even exist yet. Not as the Cowboys and not as the Rangers. Meredith was drafted by the Bears in the 3rd. Perkins drafted by the Colts in the 9th. So in the 1961 Draft Dallas owed those picks to those teams.
On December 28, 1959 Tex Schramm hired New York Giants Defensive Coordinator Tom Landry to be the Head Coach. They still didn't officially have a team.
So Clint Murchison got underhanded to acquire the necessary votes. First he had a cohort bribe an Arizona Senator on the Kennedy Administration anti-monopoly commission to look into whether The Washington Redskins held a monopoly in the south by virtue of their own television network.
As we all know (or at least we all should) he then purchased the Redskins fight song, "Hail to the Redskins," from Marshall's estranged wifeCorinne Griffith, and Barnee Breeskin. She wrote the words, he wrote the music. Murchison held the song hostage to secure Marshall's yes vote, and 52 years ago today they got the votes needed and awarded Dallas a team that was called the Cowboys.
The Draft had come and gone, they were to begin play in 1961 along with the Minnesota Vikings, but a fellow Dallas oil heir, Lamar Hunt, launched the AFL and put his team in Dallas, and called them the Texans, just like the original in 1952.
Murchison argued that he could not spot the AFL a year and compete, so the Cowboys became the only team in NFL history to get their launch without the benefit of a Draft. On March 13, 1960 the other 12 NFL teams froze 25 players and opened the rest up for Dallas to take. No more than 3 from any team. That is how a rag tag group got their start in the NFL in 1960.
Walt Garrison is noted for joking that the 1960 Cowboys season film is also the 1960 Bloopers film, they just change the labels. Unlucky number 13.
448 wins, 33 post season wins, 5 Super Bowls, and 21 Division Championships all have their Genesis on this date 52 years ago.