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Old 08-06-2007, 09:00 PM   #1
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Default Who are these people that run the Pro Football Hall of Fame?

As I sat watching the Pro Football Hall of Fame induction Saturday evening from Canton Ohio, I never thought my feelings for it would have change 180 degrees toward the end. Don't get me wrong the inductee's all deserve to be there. But as I watched I realize it's the damn timeing that I have a problem with.

Charlie Sanders, Thurman Thomas, Bruce Matthews and Michael Irvin all enjoy the red carpet treatment from the Canton staff, and the roar of the crowd on hand showing there support for the ex-players. It truly was an event that each one will carry with him the rest of his life.

That is all but one.

The name I didn't mention was also an inductee of the 2007 class. His name, Gene Hickerson. After waiting 29 years for induction into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Gene Hickerson didn't say a word during the induction ceremony.

He couldn't.

Ravaged by Alzheimer's disease, the storied guard was unable to give his own acceptance speech. Once accolades were delivered by son Bob and former teammate Bobby Franklin, a wheelchair-bound Hickerson was rolled onto the stage at Fawcett Stadium by the three Hall of Fame running backs Jim Brown, Bobby Mitchell and Leroy Kelly he blocked for during 15 seasons with the Cleveland Browns.

A once-strapping athlete that stood 6-foot-3 and 248 pounds during his heyday now resides in an assisted living facility at the age of 72. Hickerson is so ill that he clearly didn't recognize the beautiful bronze bust that captures one of the NFL's all-time greatest pulling guards in his prime during the 1960s.

"He doesn't grasp what's going on here," An ex teammate said before the ceremony.

This guy has beel elgible for the Hall of fame for several years. What in the hell is the difference between him now and ten years ago. At least ten years ago the poor guy could have enjoyed the event, and know what was going on.

I have a new found hatred for these AH's that run the thing. Shame on them to leave a guy hanging like that.
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Old 08-06-2007, 10:40 PM   #2
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Yes, I'm sure the Pro Football Hall of Fame knew he would develop Alzheimer's and intentionally delayed him being inducted.

It's a shame that he wasn't able to enjoy it but I don't see how we can blame the HOF for this.

Ten years ago there were probably more qualified candidates. What do you propose? All borderline Hall of Fame players get enshrined when they reach a certain age in case they become ill?
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Old 08-08-2007, 06:22 AM   #3
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An offensive guard who weighed 248 pounds.

How times change.
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Old 08-08-2007, 05:02 PM   #4
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Brad has compiled a list of the biggest snubs, for those interested: https://www.sports-central.org/sport...gest_snubs.php
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