Charles Burnham “Bud” Wilkinson served as the head football coach at the University of Oklahoma from 1947 to 1963, compiling a record of 145–29–4. His Oklahoma Sooners won three national championships (1950, 1955, and 1956) and 14 conference titles. Between 1953 and 1957, Wilkinson’s Oklahoma squads won 47 straight games, a record that still stands at the highest level of college football.
Following World War II, Jim Tatum, the new head coach at the University of Oklahoma, persuaded Wilkinson to join his staff in 1946. After one season in Norman, Tatum left the Sooners for the University of Maryland. The 31-year-old Wilkinson was named head football coach and athletic director of the Sooners.
After retiring from coaching following the 1963 season, Wilkinson entered into politics. In 1965, he became a broadcaster with ABC Sports. He returned to coaching in 1978, as head coach of the St. Louis Cardinals in the National Football league for two seasons. Wilkinson was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame as a coach in 1969. Bud Wilkinson died Feb. 9, 1994.
This interview with Jay Wilkinson, son of Bud Wilkinson, was conducted February 9, 2012.
Interview with Jay Wilkinson about Bud Wilkinson
Müllerhaus Legacy Website Team
Date Created: February 9, 2012
Date Published: December 22, 2012
Photo Credits: Slideshow images from “Good Guys Wear White Hats, The Life of George Nigh” by Bob Burke
Notes: Recorded by John Erling in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Digital Audio Sound Recording, Non-Music.