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Gil Brandt

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Subject: Walter Camp Man of the Year, Cam Newton, Dave Grayson, History of the Dallas Cowboys, Tex Schramm
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Gil Brandt

Gil Brandt
Position: Vice President of player personnel
Personal information
Date of birth: (1933-03-04) March 4, 1933
Place of birth: Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Career information
High school: North Division
College: Wisconsin
Career history
As executive:
Career highlights and awards

Gil Brandt (born March 4, 1933) was a Vice President of player personnel for the Dallas Cowboys from 1960 to 1988. He attended college at the University of Wisconsin.


  • Early years 1
  • Professional career 2
  • References 3
  • External links 4

Early years

A native of Milwaukee, he attended North Division High School where he practiced football as a two-way player, playing halfback on offense and defensive back on defense. He also lettered in basketball and track.

He enrolled at the University of Wisconsin, but left after two years. He worked as a photographer that specialized in new-born babies and was employed as a part-time scout for the Los Angeles Rams based on a recommendation by Elroy Hirsch.[1]

Professional career

Brandt served as the Dallas Cowboys' chief talent scout since the club's birth in 1960. He had served as a part-time scout for the Los Angeles Rams under General Manager Tex Schramm in the 1950s. When Schramm took command of the newly formed Dallas franchise in 1960, Brandt was one of the first people he hired. Schramm, Brandt and Coach Tom Landry formed the triumvirate which guided the Cowboys for their first 29 years.

He helped pioneer many of the scouting techniques used by NFL clubs today, such as:

  • Creating a new scouting and evaluation system for prospects, which would later spread throughout the New York Giants scouting process based on the Cowboys system.[2]
  • Using computers for scouting and talent evaluations. To achieve this level of automatization, the Cowboys had to systematically define which were the traits, measurable qualities and skills that could be expressed into numbers and formulas in order for a computer to understand them.[3]
  • Finding potential prospects in other sports like: Bob Hayes, Cornell Green, Peter Gent, Toni Fritsch, Percy Howard, Ken Johnson, Ron Howard, Wade Manning and Manny Hendrix. The Cowboys also set up hospitality suites for coaches at the NCAA basketball tournaments.[4]
  • Brandt was one of the first talent scouts to look outside of the United States and Canada for potential players. Kicker Toni Fritsch was discovered during a European tour.[5]
  • The use of psychology tests to identify the mental and personality make-up of prospects.[6]
  • Finding players in the undrafted free agent and small college talent pool, such as Drew Pearson, Cliff Harris, and Everson Walls.[7]
  • Helped to create the NFL Scouting Combine as a centralization of the scouting evaluation process.

Brandt left the Cowboys after new owner Jerry Jones bought the team. After a few years out of football, he returned as a print analyst and draft expert. [8] He currently contributes to as a senior analyst. He is their main personnel guru, offering insight and commentary on all aspects of players and teams. Brandt is a major contributor in selecting the Playboy All-American Football Team along with sports editor Gary Cole. Brandt has also been responsible for inviting collegiate players to the NFL Draft every year. He is a regular on Sirius NFL Radio Network as a commentator on "Late Hits", "The Red Zone", and the SIRIUS NFL Tailgate Show. [3] [4]

On April 9, 2015, he was inducted into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame.


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  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^,410926
  5. ^,3148771&hl=en
  6. ^,5531192
  7. ^
  8. ^ Gil Brandt After the Cowboys

External links

  • Gil Brandt's archive
  • A Shuttle Shakes Up The Pros
  • The Dallas Cowboys Dynasty
  • Gil Brandt From Photog To Super Scout
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