Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Dumping on Dallas

For many years, Pro Football Hall of Fame (HOF) voters with Dallas connections, such as writers Frank Luksa and Rick Gosselin, rightly have elaborated in the pages of their newspapers on an obvious anti-Cowboys bias in the process.

They should know. Over the years, each has presented solid cases for Cowboys from Bob Hayes onward who stood out even in comparison to peers who made the HOF; yet, those Cowboys have been rejected year after year. Only a handful of Cowboys who were so outrageously dominant that rejection was practically impossible — Bob Lilly, Roger Staubach, Tony Dorsett, Randy White, Mel Renfro, and Tom Landry — are in the HOF. Why just those very few, from the one franchise that has produced the best results in the Super Bowl era of football — eight appearances and five championships!

Such unmatched excellence didn’t happen with beer-bellied schmucks pulled in from the sports bar around the corner and swaddled in pads for Sunday’s games. It happened with greatness — the sort of all-time greatness the HOF is supposed to recognize but doesn’t, in the case of Dallas.

Yes, there are some great players for several teams who aren’t in and should be. But why ignore so many from the Cowboys, for so long?

And now, knowing fully well the Dump Dallas Disease that afflicts HOF voters, Rick Gosselin has composed a column for the Dallas Morning News, elucidating in a very disturbing way why Troy Aikman, eligible this coming year, may be rejected. Yes, Troy Aikman, winner of three Super Bowls and of more games in one decade than any other quarterback ever. I can send the full column to anyone interested.

Gosselin shows that Troy is statistically inferior to many quarterbacks from the ’90s, but also, argues why, and that it shouldn’t be held against him. In short, he was too good for his own good!

Troy would have his typical 18-for-21 half, build a lead, then feed the ball to Emmitt in the second half to ensure victory. Many times, he played essentially half a game because that’s all that was necessary. He and his team were that good! For starters, Troy thoroughly picked defenses apart with the short-to-medium passing game, firing the ball with almost mechanical efficiency and uncanny accuracy to any and every eligible receiver or back, only to have Emmitt and that mammoth line slowly grind the other team into exhausted mush, after halftime, with the relentless pounding of a very physical running game.

The Cowboys’ imposing system of early, precise dissection followed by brutal power-football didn’t pad Troy’s stats and didn’t produce gaudy yardage or TD numbers. It simply won games — many, many games, including three Super Bowls. Isn’t that what matters most?

Troy didn’t have the media-friendly comeback heroics of Elway or Montana because he didn’t need to. He put his team into the lead and kept it there. Legendary comebacks aren’t necessary when you play so well as to avoid getting behind in the first place!

Troy was the ultimate team player. All he did was win, and win again and again. No quarterback — not even those with huge numbers — deserves HOF honors more. If Troy isn’t let in on this first ballot, this year, as he deserves, we can confirm what we already know in our hearts…the HOF doesn’t want Cowboys.

Here’s my list of no-brainer Cowboys that, for mysterious reasons, are already eligible (before Aikman) but have been rejected by the HOF at least once.

Bob Hayes
Rayfield Wright
Lee Roy Jordan
Cliff Harris
Michael Irvin

…and those who soon (0-6 years) will be eligible who deserve to be in…
Troy Aikman
Darren Woodson
Emmitt Smith
Deion Sanders (but representing what team)?

…the current Cowboy who *ought* to be a lock 5 years after he quits…
Larry Allen

…and these players who have better credentials in many respects than
players from the same era who are in…

Charlie Waters
Drew Pearson
Ed “Too Tall” Jones
Harvey Martin

This is a big backlog that is accumulating here, a situation that, in and of itself, may hurt those players’ chances because of the great number of others from the same franchise in the queue. After all, wouldn’t it “look funny” to have too many players from the same team let in all the sudden, despite the fact that the HOF itself is responsible for the same unjustified logjam of deserving Dallas players?

What a sad, sad shame it is that Bob Hayes — the offensive player singlehandedly responsible for the advent of the zone defense in the pros — didn’t get in while still alive, and can’t get in posthumously either. Same for Harvey Martin, as dominant of a defensive end as anyone from the 70s/80s who is in. How many more great Cowboys of the 60s-80s must die as HOF rejects?

Time for a new way: Accountability. Make all the HOF voters and their votes public record, as college football is about to do with the coaches’ poll. Require all HOF voters to write public essays justifying their votes for and against each nominated player, each year. After all, most of the voters are professional writers anyway, so what hardship would that requirement be? I would gladly and voluntarily do so, were I an HOF voter. Surely one who writes for a living could do so even more willingly, more eloquently, more persuasively. And if not, toss ’em out and find replacement voters who can, and will.


As for the coming week, once again…goin’ on the road, brother!

This time my wanderlust takes a northward turn to Manitoba, for an officially sanctioned visit to Pat McCarthy and the rest of the good folks of the Prairie SPC of Environment Canada. After the Oklahoma-Florida-Indiana jaunt, the road trip to Llano country, about 20,000 miles of supercell observing sojourns (still more days’ logs yet to post!), an intercept of Hurricane Dennis and a personal vacation to Europe, I ain’t tired of traveling yet. I may post if I get a good connection and some time.


One Response to “Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Dumping on Dallas”

  1. Britney's on September 11th, 2007 6:02 pm

    Cowboys are the best team in the NFL, As far as I m concerned, we have great fans, really the whole city of Dallas will say that. In Dallas if you want to watch the Cowboys in style good luck with that, all the Cowboys premium seats get sold out the day they show up in ticketmaster. Cowboys tickets are sometimes 2 or even 5 times the face value. [Unsolicited commercial web link deleted.]
    Anyhow I though this is something would interest you, a tip from a Cowboys fan GO Cowboys!!!
    God bless Football

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