Burl Stidham was born in Wister, Ok. He loved sports from the start. He played baseball and other sports but ironically he did not play football, the sport where he would make his mark, because Wister did not have a football team. Burl married Lillian Hurd from Clayton, Ok.
Burl began his football coaching career at Poteau, Ok, in 1940 where he spent 6 seasons taking the Pirates to the state championship game in 1946. He spent 1 season at Panama, OK before taking over the reins of the Bartlesville football program in 1948. He coached Bartlesville for 14 seasons from 1948-1961 compiling a record of 81-52-6, a 58.2% winning % and the most wins of any Bartlesville football coach. In 1954 he coached all-state players and Bartlesville Athletic Hall of Fame members Kenneth Fitch, and Bobby Joe Green. He served as the head of the Oklahoma State Coaches Association. He and his wife Lillian both taught in the Bartlesville school system. Burl taught American History at College High and Lillian was a 3rd grade teacher at Lincoln Elementary.
Burl Stidham coached high school football coach for 21 years, received the 1994 Contribution to Amateur Football Award. Now retired, Stidham compiled a 180-63-11 record during coaching stints at Bartlesville, Poteau and Panama. He was elected into the Oklahoma Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 1968 and is a past president of the organization.