Former Pittsburgh Steelers safety Troy Polamalu recently told the media that he’s “nervous” about giving his Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrinement speech. So it’s perhaps fortuitous that the Hall of Fame has scheduled him to be the first of the 12 members of the Class of 2020 to be formally enshrined on Saturday Aug. 7, with the ceremonies set to get underway at 6:30 p.m. Eastern.
Polamalu will be followed by Cliff Harris, Steve Atwater, Paul Tagliabue and Steve Hutchinson before former Steelers safety Donnie Shell comes to the podium. Then there will be five other entrants before the night’s ceremonies come to an end with a speech by former Steelers head coach Bill Cowher.
Following is the complete order of speakers on Aug. 7.
1. Troy Polamalu (to be introduced by Dick LeBeau)
2. Cliff Harris
3. Steve Atwater
4. Paul Tagliabue
5. Steve Hutchinson
6. Donnie Shell
7. Isaac Bruce
8. Jimbo Covert
9. Edgerrin James
10. Harold Carmichael
11. Jimmy Johnson
12. Bill Cowher
“All enshrinees have been told speeches will be limited to six minutes, with cutoff music coming at the eight-minute mark, to move things along,” notes Teresa Varley of Steelers.com.
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The Class of 2021 Will be Enshrined on Sunday Aug. 8
Naturally, the ceremonies will resume the following evening when the Class of 2021 is formally enshrined beginning at 7 p.m. Eastern.
Per the Pro Football Hall of Fame, former Steelers offensive guard Alan Faneca will be sixth among the seven speakers, with Faneca having selected longtime teammate Hines Ward to introduce him. Faneca is perhaps hoping that the exposure will provide a boost to Ward’s candidacy, which has stalled at the semifinal round for five consecutive years.
The complete order of Sunday’s speeches is as follows:
1. Drew Pearson
2. Tom Flores
3. Peyton Manning
4. John Lynch
5. Calvin Johnson
6. Alan Faneca
7. Charles Woodson
The Steelers Will Play the Cowboys in the Hall of Fame Game on Aug. 5
Hall of Fame Weekend 2021 will get underway on the evening of Thurs. Aug. 5 when the Steelers take on the Dallas Cowboys in the annual Hall of Fame game at Tom Benson Stadium. Bill Cowher has indicated that he plans to be on the Pittsburgh sideline for the game, and that he is hoping to convince current Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin to “let me call one blitz,” likely after a consult with former Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau, who will also be on hand.
Meanwhile, another feel-good story also appears to be in the works. During the above-referenced call with the media, Troy Polamalu indicated that he plans to return to Heinz Field this season after seemingly having been estranged from organization since he retired five-plus years ago. In other words, he will likely be in attendance when he is formally added to the Steelers Ring of Honor along with James Farrior, Greg Lloyd, Mike Wagner and Dwight White. All are part of the Hall of Honor Class of 2020, which was named in September of last year.
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