The Dallas Cowboys they haven’t won a single Super Bowl in two decades, but instead their owner, Jerry Jones, yes he has earned millions of dollars with the franchise since he acquired it in the late 1980s and is one of the world’s biggest billionaires.
Jerry Jones currently occupies position 151 in the ranking of the richest in the world —which is led by Elons Musk with 245 billion dollars— with a net worth of 11.2 billion dollarsaccording to Bloomberg.
Most of Jerry Jones’ fortune comes from the Dallas Cowboys, the most valuable team in the National Football League (NFL), with an estimated value of 5.7 billion dollarsaccording to an analysis carried out by Sportico consultants in 2021.
The Cowboys have been a great deal for Jones because bought the franchise for a record $140 million in 1989. Jones is the sole owner of the team and has given it financial stability, apparently having no debts to the NFL, according to Peter J. Schwartz, a New York-based valuation consultant.
Who is Jerry Jones and how did he make his fortune?
Jerral ‘Jerry’ Jones (October 13, 1942) was born in Los Angeles, California, but grew up in the Rose City section of North Little Rock, Arkansas. His parents owned Pat and Arminta Jones grocery stores.
He entered the University of Arkansas on a football scholarship, where on his first day of classes he met Eugenia ‘Gene’ Chambers, whom he married 18 months later. He was a member of the Kappa Sigma fraternity and offensive lineman and team captain for Arkansas who was crowned the undefeated champion of the Football Writers of American Association in 1964. He graduated in Business Administration in 1965.
After graduating, Jerry Jones took out a million dollar loan from the Teamsters union (then run by Jimmy Hoffa) to open the Shakey’s Pizza franchise business in Missouri, but failed.
Jones went to his father, who appointed him executive vice president at his insurance agency Modern Security Life of Springfield, Missouri. He wanted to buy a professional football team and was very close to doing so with the San Diego Chargers from the fledgling American Football League, but backed out due to the franchise’s poor finances, he told HBO.
Jones returned to Arkansas to study for a Master of Business Administration, graduating in 1970. Created Jone Oil and Land Lease to search for oil in Texas and was very successful as it found the natural resource in 12 of its first 13 wells explored, according to the Dallas Observer. Thanks to the so-called ‘black gold’ he consolidated his fortune.
The Dallas Cowboys and Other Jerry Jones Businesses
With his oil fortune, Jerry Jones paid $140 million ($300 million today adjusting for inflation) for the Dallas Cowboys in 1989, the highest figure ever for an NFL franchise. He fired the coach, revamped the team, named himself GM, and hired Jimmy Johnson (his former college teammate) as coach.
In the new era of Jones, the Cowboys won the 1993, 1994 and 1996 Super Bowls. The team also became the team with the most appearances in SB, the most National Conference championships and the most Division titles. In 2009, AT&T Stadium opened in Arlington, Texas. However, the team has not been a league champion for more than two decades.
In 2004, he entered the pizza franchise business. Papa John’s in Texas. owns 78 percent of Comstock Resources. He also has investments in real estate and hotel management. It has land from a series of entities called blue star and a share in Legends Hospitality Management.
Legends Hospitality, in partnership with Yankee Global Enterprises, is a food, beverage, merchandise, retail and service operations company at entertainment venues such as the Dallas Cowboys Stadium.
Dallas Cowboys title drought
In Jimmy Johnson’s first season in charge, the Cowboys went 1-15. However, in the following they improved to 7-9 and in 1993 and 1994 the first two titles for Jerry Jones, both defeating the Buffalo Bills.
However, the relationship between Jones and Johnson fractured after the Cowboys’ owner told reporters that any coach could take the team to the Super Bowl. Jones hired another former college teammate, Barry Switzer, who won the 1996 Super Bowl against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Dallas’ success ended when the triplet of players that got the three SBs disintegrated; Michael Irvin retired in 1999, Troy Aikman retired the following year due to injuries, and Emmitt Smith left for the Cardinals. Additionally, Jerry Jones has been accused of hiring low-profile coaches to continue to have control of the roster.
Tony Romo established himself as a great quarterback between 2003 and 2016, but without achieving the Super Bowl. His successor, Dak Prescott, plagued by injuries, has also failed to get the team into the postseason.
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Jerry Jones: How big is the Dallas Cowboys owner and how did he get rich?