Aaron Lavinsky
VideoVideo (03:42): Vikings coaching great Bud Grant discusses his career on and off the field.

Star Tribune sports editor Glen Crevier held a Super Bowl planning meeting after the season — the 2016 season. The light bulbs were already starting to turn on for writers and editors in the newsroom for coverage of the 2018 Super Bowl, nearly 400 days away then.

One of the early ideas was Mark Craig’s look at the earliest years of pro football in Minnesota, which was the featured story in the Thursday sports section. Several other early ideas are about to launch next week.

The story idea that received the most “oh yeah, we have to do that” reactions: Bud.

Bud Grant is Minnesota football, isn’t he? We can’t have all of earth’s sporting eyes turn to our state and not tell a Bud Grant story.

Plans were made then, and we knew we wanted it to be about more than football, more than a few wonderful coaching stories from the legend. Turns out, that’s easy goal to accomplish with Grant.

Dennis Anderson, our Outdoors columnist, accepted the challenge. Anderson has for years known Grant, an outdoorsman as much as a football man in his 90 years. Photographer Aaron Lavinsky helped tell Grant’s story as well.

More than a year after that first planning meeting, the Bud Grant story for Super Bowl LII is here. You’ll see it online this weekend and in your Sunday Sports section.

In the meantime, we hope you take a couple minutes to watch the video above from Lavinsky, which helps show that Bud Grant at 90 is a great story to lead off a historic sports week in Minnesota.

— Chris Carr, deputy sports editor