posted on Oct, 26 2003 @ 06:09 AM
Bill Parcells jilted the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at the altar before they paid a king's ransom for Jon Gruden in February 2002.
On Sunday, Parcells and the Dallas Cowboys visit the defending Super Bowl champions.
The Parcells Reunion Tour kicked off with wins over two of his former teams - the New York Giants and New York Jets - in September at the
On Sunday, Parcells faces the team he could have coached.
When the Bucs fired Tony Dungy after the 2001 season, owner Malcolm Glazer offered the job to Parcells, who coached the Giants to Super Bowl titles in
1986 and 1990.
Parcells appeared ready to accept it, but backed out at the last minute and decided to stay in retirement.
The Bucs then pursued Gruden and Steve Mariucci. Both were under contract, but Glazer was willing to pay a heavy price to pry Gruden loose from Al
Davis, sending the Oakland Raiders four draft picks and US$8million.
Gruden proved to be worthy, leading the Bucs to their first Super Bowl title last season.
At 39, he became the youngest coach to win a Super Bowl.
The way Parcells has the Cowboys playing this season, though, a team which has suffered through an abysmal few years before his arrival, it's easy to
see why the Bucs initially wanted him.
The 62-year-old has made an immediate impact for Dallas owner Jerry Jones.
The team was beginning to become better known for its meddling boss than its reign as "America's Team".
However, this is clearly Parcells' team.
Before he arrived, the Cowboys did not have a winning season since 1998 and went 5-11 each of the past three seasons under Dave Campo.
Now they are riding a five-game winning streak for the first time since 1994.