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Burgundy And Gold Steelers

Posted by Matt Terl on August 10, 2010 – 8:05 am

Up until Russ Grimm’s post-enshrinement party, this was my favorite moment from Hall of Fame weekend: four of the Pittsburgh Steelers’ starting offensive linemen wearing Grimm’s number 68 jersey in the stands to honor their former coach. It was an unnecessary, impressive tribute to a guy who hasn’t been part of their team for three full seasons.

“We had the jerseys made when he became a finalist for the first time,” Steelers guard Trai Essex told me, “and we brought them back out to show our support here.”
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The Russ Grimm Enshrinement Afterparty (And A Canton Wrap-Up)

Posted by Matt Terl on August 9, 2010 – 8:45 am

In a weekend full of memorable moments, this picture captures far and away the most memorable. At the post-enshrinement party for Russ Grimm — with a 5 O’Clock Club sign behind the bar and cans of beer readily available — the Hogs who were present gathered around their old coach and posed for a few pictures. From left to right, that’s Rick “Doc” Walker, Donnie Warren, George Starke, Joe Bugel brandishing his rings, Russ Grimm, and Joe Jacoby looming over Jeff Bostic.

There were a few other photo ops — more players plus Joe Gibbs, for example — but if you were a fan of the Redskins of the 1980s, this was probably the gold standard. It wasn’t quite like being in the legendary 5 O’Clock Club shed after practice, I’m sure, but you could look at these guys and see the same camaraderie that they built in those days.

“Everybody talks about the 5 O’Clock Club,” Jacoby told Steve Czaban and Andy Pollin on ESPN 980 a couple of months ago. “Yes, there were guys out there having their cold beer, but there were also guys out there just to be out there. A lot of guys came out there to get things off their chest, let things air out.”

And Bostic added, “The 5 O’Clock Club, trust me, that was as big a part of our success….”

So it was a fitting symbol to invoke as the first of the Hogs was enshrined in the Hall of Fame.

More pictures of the party after the jump.
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Joe Bugel Presents Russ Grimm For The Hall Of Fame

Posted by Matt Terl on August 9, 2010 – 8:18 am

I’ve gotten a few requests for this, so here it is: Joe Bugel’s enshrinement presentation of Russ Grimm. Video, and transcript (via the Hall of Fame’s website) after the jump.

http://p.castfire.com/UwIWI/video/389042/100806_hof_russ_grimm_presenter_feature_600ws-flv_2010-08-08-134424.895.m4v Read more »

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Scenes From The Enshrinement

Posted by Matt Terl on August 8, 2010 – 6:09 am

Some memorable moments from Russ Grimm’s enshrinement into the Hall of Fame, with one of the last ones first:

Grimm poses for pictures next to his Hall of Fame bust moments after completing his enshrinement speech. For me, the strongest part of the speech was its close, a paean to Redskins fans:

“Last but not least,” he said, “to burgundy and gold fans, there’s many a time when I closed my eyes and I picture myself still putting on those pads at old RFK Stadium, and those stands are rocking up and down and 50 some thousand chanting, We want Dallas. I can hear the diesel horns blowing when 44 was carrying the football, and I remember standing there in the pouring rain when everyone was throwing the seat cushions down on the field in the playoff game versus Atlanta.

“You provided a lot of memories for me and my teammates. You made playing for the Redskins special. You created an atmosphere on game day that was second to none. The support you showed, the enthusiasm you had, the love you displayed for those teams will always be remembered. Thank you very much.”

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Russ Grimm On Joe Bugel And Vice Versa

Posted by Matt Terl on August 7, 2010 – 1:56 pm

When Russ Grimm is enshrined in the Hall of Fame tonight, he will be presented by Joe Bugel, his first and longtime offensive line coach. The two blue-collar guys from Pittsburgh pretty much gave the original Hogs their identity in the early eighties, and they began a friendship that continues to this day.

I was able to sit down with Bugel and Grimm today for an interview for the Redskins Broadcast Network, and nothing made their relationship clearer than the two answer that came when I asked Grimm if he had had any doubt who would be his presenter, then asked Bugel if he had had any doubt what he would say.

(I shot this video on my Flip camera; the finished piece will, of course, look and sound much smoother and more professional whenever it airs.)


Here’s the transcription, which completely fails to capture the awesomeness of the fist-bump a few seconds in:
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Russ Grimm Receives His Hall Of Fame Watch

Posted by Matt Terl on August 7, 2010 – 7:20 am

Talking at Redskins Park yesterday, Redskins owner Daniel Snyder told reporters that he had sent soon-to-be-Hall-of-Famer Russ Grimm a “nice and shiny watch,” adding, “A Hall of Fame watch I give out to all the Hall of Famers.”

Well, Grimm received that watch last night at a hospitality event (i.e., afterparty) following last night’s Enshrinee Dinner. Grimm was tucked away at a corner table in the hotel ballroom, looking relaxed and enjoying the company of his family and friends, including Darrell Green and Joe Bugel. Asked if he had any specific response to the gift, Grimm offered a big smile and said, simply, “Thanks!”

The watch being unwrapped:

And a happy Grimm with the watch: Read more »

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Russ Grimm Prepares For His Enshrinement

Posted by Matt Terl on August 6, 2010 – 6:57 pm

Tomorrow, Redskins offensive line great Russ Grimm will be enshrined in the Hall Of Fame. Today, he ran the gauntlet of day-before-enshrinment events: a luncheon with existing Hall of Famers. A dinner, where he’ll be presented with his Hall of Fame jacket — I’m writing this in the media workroom of the Canton Civic Center during the ramp-up to that event. And, sandwiched between, a brief open media session with all of the visiting press.

Grimm talked a lot about his Pittsburgh roots — fellow enshrinees Rickey Jackson and Dick LeBeau also have Pittsburgh ties — and a lot about the impressive credentials of the rest of his Hall class. But most interesting to me was Grimm’s discussion of his preparation for tomorrow’s ceremony.

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Russ Grimm Is Not A Fashion Plate

Posted by Matt Terl on August 3, 2010 – 6:09 pm

You’d never guess from the picture above, but Original Hog and soon-to-be Hall of Famer Russ Grimm apparently isn’t much of a clotheshorse. Grimm had a conference call today as a prelude to his upcoming enshrinement in the Hall Of Fame this weekend, and this is easily my favorite part of the transcript:

On how he went about getting somebody to handle all this stuff for him like picking out his suits:

“It is pretty easy because I am not one of those fashion (people). The fashion police, if I had my pick of what I am wearing they would probably tear me up every day.

“I have the stuff sitting there, it’s just match it up.

“I don’t even know where I am supposed to be. They have the schedule. I know I have to do something on Thursday night. I said what is it, (they said), ‘Don’t worry, the stuff is marked. This is what you wear on Thursday. This is what you wear Friday.’

“So I am just going to put it on. If it looks good it looks good. I am one of those people like, I put clothes or get a haircut and my thing always is, you get a haircut and the first thing they do is they put the mirror up and you sit there and say what is the mirror for? ‘Well, don’t you want to look at the back of it?’ I am not looking at the back of my head.

“So I am not really looking down at what I am wearing all the time. You have to look at it. You make the decision of whether it looks good or not. I just put it on and go.”

Grimm — who is being introduced by the legendarily salty and inspirational Joe Bugel — also notes that he hasn’t even finished his induction speech yet, let alone rehearsed. So, yeah, I’m getting more and more excited about this weekend with each passing day.

The full transcript is after the jump. Read more »

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