June 8, 1933|
|Died:|| (aged 64)
|1968–1971||New England Patriots Director of Player Personnel|
|1971–1973||New England Patriots Director of Pro Scouting|
|1974||Florida Blazers owner|
|1964–1965||Boston Sweepers (Defensive Coach)|
|1966–1967||Boston Patriots (Linebackers)|
|1960||Los Angeles Chargers|
|Career highlights and awards|
Rommie Lee Loudd (June 8, 1933 – May 9, 1998) was an American former collegiate and professional American football player, coach, and executive. He was the first black assistant coach in the American Football League and the first black majority owner of a major league sports team.
Loudd was born in Madisonville, Texas, and played tight end for coach Red Sanders at UCLA from 1953 to 1955. He was a member of the Bruins team that won the 1954 Rose Bowl and was named that year's FWAA & UPI National Champions.
He was drafted by the San Francisco 49ers in the 26th round (304th overall) of the 1956 NFL Draft, but instead signed with the BC Lions of the Canadian Football League. After being cut by the Chicago Bears in 1959, Loudd joined the newly formed American Football League as a member of the Los Angeles Chargers. He was released by the Chargers after one season and signed with the AFL' Boston Patriots.
In 1964, Loudd moved to coaching. He was the defensive coach of the Boston Sweepers of the Atlantic Coast Football League for two seasons before becoming the linebackers coach for the Boston Patriots and the first African-American coach in the history of the AFL. After two seasons as coach, Loudd moved to the front office, where he was the Patriots Director of Player Personnel from 1968 to 1971 and Director of Pro Scouting from 1971 to 1973.
In 1973, Loudd led a bid to get a National Football League franchise in Orlando, Florida. The expansion franchise would instead go to Philadelphia construction magnate Thomas McCloskey who founded the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. In 1974, Loudd became the owner of the Florida Blazers of the World Football League. He was the first black top executive in major league sports.
Loudd, one season, worked with Don Gillis for New England Patriots preseason.
On April 3, 1957, Loudd and two companions were charged with varied "morals offenses". He would later be convicted of sexual misconduct. On December 23, 1974, he was arrested on charges of embezzling state sales tax money. Three months later he was charged with conspiracy and delivery of cocaine. He was sentenced to two concurrent fourteen-year sentences for conviction on two counts of delivering cocaine. He was also sentenced to two years in prison for possession and distribution of cocaine. The sales tax embezzlement and conspiracy to deliver cocaine charges were dropped following his convictions on drug charges. After three years in prison, Loudd was released on parole and became an associate minister at Mount Tabor Baptist Church.
- "Rommie Loudd, 64, Pro Football Coach". The New York Times. 1998-05-18. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
- "Sports News Briefs; First Black Top Executive in Sports". New York Times. 1974-05-21. Retrieved 2009-06-13.
- "Patriots Hire Negro Coach". St. Petersburg Times. 1966-03-04. Retrieved 2009-06-13.
- Girard, Fred (1973-04-08). "His Selling Point: Black Ownership". St. Petersburg Times. Retrieved 2009-06-13.
- Zier, Patrick (1974-07-12). "Being Owner Something New for Rommie Loudd". The Ledger. Retrieved 2009-06-13.
- "Sports News Briefs; First Black Top Executive in Sports – Free Preview". The New York Times. 1974-05-21. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
- "Charges Name Gridder Loudd in Morals Case". Pqasb.pqarchiver.com. 1957-04-04. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
- "Former player, exec Rommie Loudd dead at 64". Associated Press. 1998-05-13. Retrieved 2009-06-13.
- "Orlando Boss Faces Charges". Spokane Daily Chronicle. 1974-12-23. Retrieved 2009-06-13.
- "Ex-GM in WFL charged in drug ring". Pqasb.pqarchiver.com. 1975-03-11. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
- "State Drops Charges Against Jailed Loudd". St. Petersburg Times. 1976-07-20. Retrieved 2009-06-13.
- "Loudd Gets Two Years For Cocaine Possession". Pqasb.pqarchiver.com. 1976-03-09. Retrieved 2009-06-12.
- "Loudd is Granted Parole". St. Petersburg Times. 1978-09-23. Retrieved 2009-06-13.