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Lot # 941: Bear Bryant Personally Owned and Worn Houndstooth Hat from The Bryant Family (Cherry Bryant LOA)

Category: Football

Starting Bid: $3,000.00

Bids: 12 (Bid History)

Time Left: Auction closed
Lot / Auction Closed

This lot is closed. Bidding is not allowed.

Item was in Auction "Winter Classic 2022",
which ran from 2/13/2022 3:00 PM to
3/12/2022 10:00 PM

Bear Bryant was a living legend as a college football coach, but his given first name is Paul, and how he went from being Paul to becoming "Bear" is a clue to his success. Being rather poor as a youth, one of 12 children growing up in rural Arkansas, Bryant was watching a live show at a carnival, and a man on stage was offering money to anyone who would fight his captive bear. Paul Bryant was desperate for money, and full of gumption, so he went on stage, wrestled the bear, and gained a lifetime nickname. Bryant played college football at Alabama, and he is primarily noted for his 25-year tenure as the head football coach at Alabama. While coaching there, Bryant's teams won 13 conference championships and six national titles. Wearing his houndstooth hat, on-and-off the football field, became a Bryant trademark. When he retired, Bear held the record for most college football victories, at 323. Over the years, Bryant ordered many houndstooth hats, and he used to give them away. The letter (enclosed with envelope) from his daughter in law, Cherry - married to his son, Paul Bryant, Jr. - is a warm missive to a friend who may have asked for a Bryant hat for her husband. Cherry's reply, dated April 16, 1987, mentioned that the place that used to carry the hats that Bryant loved had gone out of business. Cherry Bryant's letter mentions this houndstooth hat from Bear Bryant that she is sending to her friend. The hat, in excellent condition, is quite sporty, with two small feathers, one red and the other white (Alabama colors), tucked into the hatband on the left. A tag in the back of the hat gives the size as 7 and 3/4". What better tribute to Bear Bryant than his houndstooth hat?

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