Edit ModuleEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Who Belongs on a Pittsburgh Steelers Mount Rushmore?

As the team prepares the inaugural class of its Hall of Honor, Mike Prisuta selects the four members of the Steelers family most deserving of inclusion.

Embed from Getty Images

The problem isn’t cutting,” Chuck Noll once observed just after a preseason loss and just before a mandatory reduction of the roster, “it’s stopping.”

It’s the other way around with the Steelers’ new Hall of Honor.

The franchise has finally decided to publicly brag a little bit about its storied history. There won’t be a ring of honor at Heinz Field, as is the case in so many other NFL stadiums; instead, the Hall of Honor will be on display inside the FedEx Great Hall.

“This is probably long overdue,” team president Art Rooney II acknowledged in an Aug. 1 press release, as plans for the Hall were announced.

The goal is to recognize, via an annual series of ceremonies, former players, coaches and contributors who were “integral in creating and sustaining the franchise’s success dating back to when the team was founded in 1933.”

The initial challenge with such an undertaking won’t be finding candidates who are viable. It’ll be drawing the line. The Steelers claim ties with 24 players and coaches who have been inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame, according to the team’s media guide. They range from Art Rooney Sr., who founded the franchise, to Kevin Greene, who played three of his 15 NFL seasons with the Steelers.

The Hall of Honor will also serve as a formal acknowledgment of those the Steelers suspect have been worthy but overlooked when it comes to Hall-of-Fame inclusion (L.C. Greenwood, Donnie Shell and Andy Russell come immediately to mind).

Alas, it wouldn’t be practical or proper to make everyone who’s met the Hall-of-Honor standard a part of the first Hall-of-Honor class; still, you have to start somewhere.

Why not start with the Steelers’ Mount Rushmore?

The selection committee (Rooney, Joe Gordon, Bob Labriola, Stan Savran and Tony Quatrini), even if it agreed to such a concept, would likely have its own ideas regarding who would be most deserving; we’ll find out when the inaugural class is announced on Aug. 29.

In the meantime, here’s mine:

DAN ROONEY — “The Chief” was and remains a beloved figure. But his son Dan is the one under whose stewardship the Steelers became consistent winners. There would be no finer lasting tribute than to have “The Ambassador” symbolically lead the franchise’s Hall-of-Honor parade.

CHUCK NOLL — He may or may not be the greatest coach in NFL history, but he’s in the conversation. His 4-0 record in Super Bowls is indisputably the best in NFL history and qualifies Noll to be among the first the Steelers honor in such a fashion, no matter the configuration of the Hall of Honor’s debut group.

JOE GREENE — How can you differentiate among Hall-of-Fame players? By recognizing the obvious: As far as the Steelers are concerned, there’s Greene and then there’s everybody else. No one who wore the uniform should go in ahead of Greene. No one who wore the uniform should go in with Greene.

BILL NUNN — Perhaps the greatest scout in NFL history, Nunn broke racial barriers and found the athletes Noll turned into the “Team of the 1970s.” Beyond that, he was a champion for social change whose influence extended beyond the game. How is he still so underrated and under-appreciated, historically speaking? The bench dedicated to his memory overlooking the practice fields at Saint Vincent College was a step in the right direction. But Nunn’s character and career are worthy of the highest recognition the Steelers are capable of giving, recognition that might also boost Nunn’s chances of someday winding up in Canton.

Stopping at those four wouldn’t necessarily be easy — but the Steelers’ Hall of Honor could do a lot worse for starters.


Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module

Edit ModuleShow TagsEdit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags

The Latest

Pittsburgh's Can't Miss Concerts in April

This month's lineup includes Rick Astley, Billy Price, Christopher Cross and Ronnie Milsap.

Pittsburgh Flicks and Nightlife in April

Tour local social clubs with the Roaming Social Club; expect changes at AMC Waterfront

April: Best of Culture in Pittsburgh

Check out some of the finest stage plays, dance performances and exhibits taking place this month in Pittsburgh.

Undercover: What We're Reading in April

A look back at "The Mysteries of Pittsburgh" as it turns 30, plus two literary events coming up in April.

Perspectives: ‘This Is Us’ Is a Story of Us

A former Pittsburgher finds more than a few similarities between his own life and that of the siblings on "This Is Us."

Spare Change: A New Way of Giving

A local group is using music and some spare change to help charities — and filming every step of the way.

Look How Mighty This Bellevue Garden Has Grown

Last season, the Rosalinda Sauro Sirianni Garden produced 4,862 pounds of food; the harvest was donated to three food pantries.

When and Where to Dump Your Junk (including old TVs)

A state environmental agency wants to help you recycle your hard-to-dispose-of household clutter.

Watch: Trailer of “Won't You Be My Neighbor”

The documentary about Mister Rogers' iconic show takes viewers beyond the cardigan collection and into “the heart of a creative genius.”

On a Lark: Pittsburgh Mom Creates Activewear for Babes

Unable to find cute, environmentally friendly gear for her newborn son, Lark Adventurewear founder Pallavi Golla launched her own line of moisture-wicking clothing for kids.

Pittsburgh MultiStories: The Beacon's Perch – The Grant Building

When it opened in 1929 as the city’s tallest structure, crowds of sightseers paid a quarter to visit the rooftop observation deck of the Grant Building — named for the street, which was named for the hill, which was named for the somewhat hapless general.

Rick Sebak Digs Up Distant Carnegie-Trump Connection

Research into Andrew Carnegie’s marriage reveals an unlikely, albeit tenuous, connection between the Pittsburgh icon and the 45th President.

JuJu Smith-Schuster Teams Up with Drake, Travis Scott and Ninja to Play Fortnite

Drake and Ninja broke Twitch viewing records, and Smith-Schuster and Scott joined in later.

Growing Up: mossArchitects Moving to Garfield

Principal Andrew Moss says his architecture firm will move to the heart of the Penn Avenue Arts District after outgrowing its current space in Lawrenceville.

Teaching Cyber Safety - The Things You Might Not Know

iQ:smartparent’s Cyber Safety segment offers advice on topics such as what to do with “sexted” images you find on your kids’ phones and more.