Junious Buchanan

DT

“Buck”

Junious Buchanan

13 seasons
6 AFL All-Star Games
2 Pro Bowls
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13

seasons

6

AFL All-Star Games

2

Pro Bowls
View full stats

"The only thing I ever tried to do as a football player was be consistent. I never did a lot of spectacular kinds of things. But when we graded out year in and year out, week in and week out, my grades were right there, and that’s what I prided myself on.”

Read Junious Buchanan's Bio

(Grambling)...6'7'', 270...Junious Buchanan ... NAIA All-American at Grambling ... First player selected in 1963 AFL Draft ... Possessed speed, size, determination, durability ... Missed only one game in 13 years ... Excelled at intimidating passer, batted down 16 passes, 1967 ... Four-time All-AFL, All-AFC in 1970, 1971 ... Led Chiefs defensive efforts in Super Bowl I, IV ... Played in six AFL All-Star games, two AFC-NFC Pro Bowls ... Born September 10, 1940, in Gainesville, Alabama ... Died July 16, 1992, at age of 51.

BIO

Junious Buchanan Kansas City Chiefs

"The only thing I ever tried to do as a football player was be consistent. I never did a lot of spectacular kinds of things. But when we graded out year in and year out, week in and week out, my grades were right there, and that’s what I prided myself on.”

Buck Buchanan was the first player taken in the 1963 American Football League Draft. Selected by the Kansas City Chiefs, Buck quickly proved the rave notices that preceded him were not unfounded. Eddie Robinson, his coach at Grambling, where he had been an NAIA All-America in 1962, called him "the finest lineman I have seen."

Others who had watched Buchanan in action were equally enthusiastic. Born September 10, 1940, in Gainesville, Alabama, Buchanan had the physical size – 6-7 and 270 pounds – plus the athletic instincts to be exceptionally successful at his job of foiling opposition offenses. He was particularly effective at intimidating the passer and, in one season alone in 1967, he batted down 16 opposition passes at or behind the line of scrimmage. He was clocked at 4.9 in the 40 and 10.2 in the 100 at Grambling and, with that speed; he could range from sideline to sideline to make tackles.

In spite of the weekly pounding he took on the scrimmage line, Buchanan was extremely durable. He played in 182 career games that included a string of 166 straight. After dabbling briefly at defensive end as a rookie, Buchanan settled down to his permanent job as the Chiefs' defensive right tackle. He was named to his first AFL All-Star game after his second season in 1964. It was the first of an eight-season period during which he played in either the AFL All-Star game or the AFC-NFC Pro Bowl. He was a virtually unanimous All-AFL choice from 1966 through 1969 and then won All-AFC honors in 1970 and 1971. He was a defensive leader for the Chiefs in their losing effort in Super Bowl I and then was outstanding in Kansas City's 23-7 upset of Minnesota in Super Bowl IV that saw the Buchanan-led defense completely stifle the vaunted Vikings attack.

STATS

Junious Buchanan's Stats

Year
Team
G
Int
Yds
Avg
TD
FumRec.
1963 Kansas City
14
0
0
0.0
0
0
1964 Kansas City
14
0
0
0.0
0
0
1965 Kansas City
14
0
0
0.0
0
0
1966 Kansas City
14
0
0
0.0
0
1
1967 Kansas City
14
0
0
0.0
0
0
1968 Kansas City
14
1
11
11.0
0
1
1969 Kansas City
14
0
0
0.0
0
0
1970 Kansas City
14
0
0
0.0
0
0
1971 Kansas City
14
1
9
9.0
0
0
1972 Kansas City
14
0
0
0.0
0
0
1973 Kansas City
14
1
17
17.0
0
0
1974 Kansas City
14
0
0
0.0
0
2
1975 Kansas City
14
0
0
0.0
0
0
Career Total 182
3
37
12.3
0
4
Additional Career Statistics: Scoring: 1 Safety; Kickoff Returns: 1-0



CAREER CAPSULE

Junious Buchanan's Career Capsule

Full Name: Junious Buchanan

Birthdate: September 10, 1940

Birthplace: Gainesville, Alabama

Died: July 16, 1992

High School: A.H. Parker (Birmingham, AL)

Elected to Pro Football Hall of Fame: January 27, 1990

Enshrined into Pro Football Hall of Fame: August 4, 1990

Presenter: Hank Stram, Buchanan's Head Coach with Kansas Chiefs

Other Members of Class of 1990: Bob Griese, Franco Harris, Ted Hendricks, Jack Lambert, Tom Landry, Bob St. Clair

Pro Career: 13 seasons, 182 games

Drafted: 1st round (1st overall) by Dallas Texans, AFL

Uniform Number: 86



ENSHRINEMENT SPEECH

Junious Buchanan Enshrinement speech

Junious Buck Buchanan Enshrinement Speech 1990

Presenter: Hank Stram

Thank you very much. What about those Pittsburgh fans, that's great? What about Kansas City, where the hell are those fans. In 1963 I saw Buck Buchanan for the very first time and I was stunned. He was a giant among men 617 and weighed 295 lbs. and yet with all that bulk he could still run the 40 in 4-9 and that was with two goats under his arm. Don Klosterman, our talent scout, brought Buck to our training facility in Dallas and he made an indelible impression. Buck was a superlative athlete who played football and basketball at Parker High School in Birmingham, Alabama. He was a natural leader who was voted the team captain in both sports, but as a freshman at Grabling, Buchanan played both basketball and football but after his freshman year he decided to give up basketball so he could spend all of his time concentrating on football. And after a sensational career as a defensive and offensive tackle his college coach, Eddie Robinson, the winningest coach in the history of college football, characterized Buck as the finest tackle he had ever seen. Little wonder that Buck was the first player taken in the 1963 AFL draft and later became the prototype for future professional defensive linemen.

Buck was very proud of being drafted in the first round and he said because he was their first player from a black school to be accorded such status. It said a lot for the Gramblings, the Prairie Dews and all the other black colleges. He felt an unstinting loyalty for Grambling that he later extended to the Kansas City Chiefs and for the people of Kansas City. Buck had it all. He had style, he had speed, he had quickness and he had strength combined with the ability to lead with example. He was a consonant team player who was infused with a great, great attitude. It didn't take long for Buck to earn front page success and the premier defensive lineman in the AFL.

He played both defenses and a tackle as a rookie and in 1964 he became our regular right tackle and was named to his first AFL All-Star game following that season. It was the first of eight consecutive all-star and NFL Pro Bowl appearances and during this time, buck -was not only our co-captain, but was picked by his teammates as the Chiefs' most valuable player in the 1965 and 1967 season. He was exceptionally strong against the run and had the added dimension of being an excellent up the field pass rusher. To highlight this point, he batted down 16 passes at or behind the line of scrimmage in 1967. By this time, Buck had become such a dominate force that my good friend Al Davis was compelled to find someone with a kind of size and strength necessary to neutralize Buck. Consequently, the Raiders drafted Gene Upshaw in the opening round of the first AFL-NFL draft in 1967.

And this became the most storied one-on-one rivalries in all of AFL history. Gene sums up his respect for Buck in this way in I was big, but Buck was bigger and stronger. It was hard to believe that someone so big could be so quick. It was like trying to block a host. For the most part I enjoyed playing against the other guys, but when I played against Buchanan, I couldn't sleep the night before.'' And Gene after watching all those films we watched, it was obvious that you spent more time holding Buck than you did your wife. In addition to his ability to rush the passer, Buck was gifted with exceptional lateral speed which enabled him to run people down to sideline to sideline. And the truly amazing thing about Buchanan was that we seldom saw him on the ground. When opposing teams drew up a game plan against our defense, Buck was not an ''x" and he was not an ''o" he was an ''o'' and ''x'', he was an ox. He was #86 and the opposing blockers wanted to know where he was at all times. He made teams worry about personnel and not about schemes or packages. They were looking for a way to double team Buck from the moment he got off the plane. Buck was also mentally tough and an incredibly durable athlete who missed just one game in 13 years. He also had fierce pride and a warrior’s attitude. The bigger the game the better he performed. He was always at his best when we needed him the most. When we won it all in 1969, the final season of the AFL, Buck was the primary force in our great defense that held the Jets and the Raiders and the Vikings to fewer than 100 yards rushing. At the same time, Buck helped the key pass rush that produced 9 sacks and 10 interceptions.

He was an integral part of our success story and contributed greatly to our championships in 1966 and 1969 and the appearance in Super Bowl I and the Super Bowl championship in 1970. He had helped us become the winningest team in the history of the American Football League and one of the winningest teams in all of pro football. We were only four games away from being the winningest team over a 15-year span of time. He helped us win, every big game there was to win. Because of this outstanding career, it is especially fitting that Buck is the first AFL defensive lineman to be enshrined in Canton. He joins Bob Lilly, Joe Greene arid fellow Grambling star Willie Davis as the only defensive lineman in the history of pro football to earn both a Super Bowl ring and also a Hall of Fame ring. His mother, father, family, wife, Georgia join Buck in this unforgettable Hall of Fame celebration. They along with all the Chiefs, the players, the coaches and the fans of Kansas City and around the country are very proud of your much-deserved recognition Buck and I thank you f or the honor and privilege of presenting you into the Hall of Fame where you join not only your great teammates, Bobby Bell, Willie Lanier and Lenny Dawson, but also the founder of the AFL, Lamar Hunt. Congratulations, Buck.

Buck Buchanan

Thank you very much Hank for such an eloquent presentation. Of course, all those great things Hank just said about me are really true. If you don't believe me, just ask my mother Fannie, she is here. However, one thing Hank neglected to mention about my career was the profound effect he and others like him had in developing my values and life's aspirations. To the many family members, teachers, coaches, fellow athletes and friends who is some ways have inspired me through my life, your help was very much appreciated, and I thank you for making this moment a reality. When it was announced back in January that I had been selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, I was attending a board meeting of the Black Chamber of Commerce of Greater Kansas City. Rick Gosselin of the Kansas City Star who was so supportive called Randy Covitz in Kansas City to inform him of my selection. Randy and Pete Elliott, the Director of the Hall of Fame, called me at home. My wife, Georgia, told him I was in route to the Chamber office and provided him with a number to reach me in my car. Wouldn’t you know it, I didn’t drive my car that morning. So, let me apologize to Randy and Pete for the many calls they made to my garage last January. To be sure, my election to the Hall of Fame left me extremely proud to be the first AFL defensive lineman to be enshrined in Canton.

Immediately after learning of my selection I thought of the many men who had played the sport we love so much. I also thought about those players, teammates and opponents alike who had encouraged and challenged me to not only be a very well-rounded athlete, but also a good and decent human being. I am especially honored to have played against all four of the AFL Hall of Fame offensive linemen. It was Ron Mix, of the Chargers, who introduced me to the AFL and then it was my turn to do the same for my good friend Gene Upshaw. What a privilege it was to battle number 63. The same was true in playing against Jim Otto and Art Shell.

As I replay my life in sports, it would have to start with my brother Slim, who in his first attempt at high school basketball, was ridiculed by his classmates. This particular incident was a turning point in my desire to excel in athletics. Then there was, Coach Wells my basketball coach at Parker High in Birmingham who instilled that I learn the fundamentals of the sport as well as the importance of team work and would you believe that I started playing football because my neighbor Willie Millett needed someone to walk home with after practice. When I reflect back, I think of Major Brown my high school football coach was was a strict disciplinarian as well as my Uncle Glennen Threat who was a positive as a teacher and as a coach. It was he who wrote the letter to Coach Robinson at Grambling State University about me insisting that Coach Robinson visit with me about this football program. That letter got me to Grambling where I meant two important people in my life today. The first is Bessie Mae McKinney, who was one of my teachers as well as a great friend and a mother away from home. The other was the all-time winningest coach in college football history, Coach Robinson. What can I say about this man that hasn't already been written or said? It is especially fitting that my enshrinement take place in this the golden anniversary season for Coach Robinson.

Coach Robinson taught me love, dedication for my school and my fellow man. This, of course, can be witnessed by two other Hall of Famers from Grambling, Willie Davis and my classmate, Willie Brown with whom I still share a warm relationship today. From Eddie Robinson to Hank Stram, luck was, definitely on my side. I would like to thank Lamar for his foresight in establishing the AFL as well as the mentor, Hank Stram for the chance to contribute to the success of the AFL's winningest team. Again, it was such a privilege to wear that 10-year patch in the Super Bowl win over the Vikings that gave the AFL its final victory against the other league. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I am at the very top of my profession, but I am not without support. At this time, I want to thank the many friends from Kansas City who traveled here to see this honor bestowed on me. The Monday Night footballers, the Black Chamber of Commerce, my Kansas City teammates, Otis Taylor who I think is the greatest receiver of all times, Jan Stenerud who I think is the greatest kicker of all time, Willie Lanier, Bobby Bell, Len Dawson and many thanks to Lamar and Norina Hunt, Jack and Martha Steadman, Don Klosterman, the entire Chiefs organization, the Kansas City community and, of course, those close friends and relatives that are here today.

I would like to express my thanks to another teammate and a current business associate Ed Lothamer and the same is true of Bert Lisman. Of course, it is a great feeling to be able to share this moment with my loved ones in the Buchanan family. My two wonderful sons, Eric and Dwaine, and my lovely daughter, Nicole, my two beautiful sisters, Betty and Evelyn and their families and my brother Douglas who is unable to be with us today. Finally, I am here as a direct result from my mother and father I s love for each other. Fannie Mae my mother is, in my opinion, the greatest women who ever lived and Wallace my father continues to be the stabilizer of the Buchanan clan. Athletes sometime think they no longer need constant coaching when there is a curtain call for their career. I am here to tell you this is untrue. Without the abiding faith and confidence in my ability provided by my wife Georgia, it would be difficult to live in the shadows of my football career.

To Georgia, the new coach on the scene, stay on the job because as a team we are unbeatable. My coach Georgia is sending me the signals to stop, so in closing I would like this bronze bust to serve as a greater purpose than a testimony to my football career. I sincerely hope this will stand as a symbol or inspiration to all young people where hard work and honest effort can take you. Being consistent in your work and never quitting until you have reached the finish line will bring you the desired results. Today I am thankful that I am able to cross the finish line. To the young people of all walks of life, may I say, never give up your hopes and dreams of success. Thank you very much and may God bless you.