Why I’m Obsessed With The Houston Oilers
If you follow my Twitter account for any length of time, you will surely notice I post about the Houston Oilers a lot. Many people (one guy) have asked me what my connection to the Oilers is. Well, the answer to that question is, none. I have never been to Houston, I don’t know anyone who lives in Houston and I don’t root for any current Houston Teams. The closest connection I think I have to Houston is that my uncle might have lived there for a year or something in the early 1980s. That’s it. I actually didn’t even root for the Oilers when they still existed. As a six or seven year old I gravitated to my hometown Buffalo Bills and The then LA Raiders. While I didn’t root for them, my eyes were drawn to their logo and colors, which was pretty unique I thought. Even at the height of the Buffalo Bills Super Bowl era when the Bills and Oilers seemed to meet in the playoffs every year, even though it was actually only twice, I never really hated the Oilers. (They also faced off in what some consider one of the best NFL games of all-time.)
Jump ahead a couple decades and the Oilers are long gone. They are now playing their games under a cruel alias, the Tennessee Titans and we are just left with the memories of Luv Ya Blue, the Astrodome, Warren Moon and the Run And Shoot Offense and of course those uniforms. As I began to watch more and more old footage on YouTube, I began to fall even more in love with the uniforms and the logo and the players who played their games in the Eighth Wonder Of The World. There is just a mystique surrounding the memory of that team. They never won a Super Bowl and were probably never hugely popular in the grand scheme of pro football in the 80s and 90s. Always overshadowed by their perceived big brother in Dallas. Still, for my money there is not many professional sports franchises that can measure up to the aesthetics of that team. Everything about them. The uniforms, the stadium, the players, all fuel my growing obsession.
The first thing that caught my eye, was that logo. May say it is just an Oil Derrick and nothing much to it. They could not be more wrong. In a recent very unscientific poll I ran on my Twitter account, most people agreed with me that the Oilers had one of the best logos int he history of sports. The Oilers changed their uniforms quite often in their first couple decades, but the one thing that was always present was the iconic logo on the side of the helmet. Starting with the Columbia blue helmet with simple white logo all the way to the final days of the Oilers in Tennessee, that logo was a part of the Oilers on-field look. It may be simple, but some of the best logos are simple. Today’s modern designs have way too much detail. You can get your point across without adding millions of layers and colors. The Oilers logo is just perfect.
Second to the logo, is the Oilers colors. Columbia Blue, not baby blue or powder, Columbia. Bud Adams really wanted those colors and they fit. The early blue helmets of the Oilers were incredible. Even the silver helmet era still had the blue jerseys, which were a part of the Oilers for their entire existence.
My Growing Collection
It started with a hat or maybe a shirt and then it keeps growing. One of the first custom helmets I ever made was the white with red mask Oilers helmets. That was the helmet i was most familiar with as a viewer of late 80s and 90s NFL football. It was only a matter of time before I added some more and now i only need to make a silver helmet to complete the collection. I also made sure to make any custom Oilers projects I could, including the wood helmets and buying vintage posters and pennants. I now have a daily ritual of scrolling through Oilers stuff on ebay, waiting for a good deal on what i consider the holy grail of Oilers memorabilia. The Houston Oilers Satin jacket. I have assembled a nice little shrine to the Oilers in my Sports Lair and it has now expanded to the Houston Gamblers of the USFL, which I have also always had an obsession with.