I bet you didn't know…
The Pro Football Hall of Fame is knee-deep in preparation for the Class of 2011’s Enshrinement this coming week. At this point there is not much that hasn’t been said about this impressive group of men – Richard Dent, Marshall Faulk, Chris Hanburger, Les Richter, Ed Sabol, Deion Sanders, and Shannon Sharpe – who will be formally inducted into pro football’s most elite fraternity on Aug. 6.
With all the football information out there (well, almost - keep checking back to Profootballhof.com for more football), I thought I would point out a few lesser known facts about each member of the Class of 2011.
While at Tennessee State, Dent studied the pass rushing techniques of fellow alum Claude Humphrey who played 13 seasons with the Atlanta Falcons (1968-1974, 1976-78) and the Philadelphia Eagles (1979-1981). Dent was amazed at Humphrey’s quick hands and feet combined with the way he could overpower blockers.
Dent was one of four “high-profile” free agents signed by the San Francisco 49ers to improve the team’s defense in 1994. The others were linebackers Ken Norton, Jr. and Gary Plummer, and fellow Class of 2011 inductee Deion Sanders.
Faulk seemed to do everything at Carver High School in New Orleans. On the football team he played running back, quarterback, wide receiver, and cornerback. He also worked with the school’s engineer in the boiler room to help keep the area clean in effort to prevent fires.
In just his second college game at San Diego State, Faulk set a NCAA freshman rushing record with 386 yards and 7 touchdowns on 37 carries versus Pacific on Sept. 14, 1991.
Chris HanburgerHanburger has a great deal of military ties in his history. He served two years in the Army before he enrolled at the University of North Carolina. His father, Chris Hanburger, Sr. was an Army Colonel. He also once visited US troops during the Vietnam War on NFL sponsored USO tours during his playing career.
Hanburger once had a thoroughbred horse race named in his honor. On July 6, 1977 Laurel Raceway in Maryland honored the linebacker during the seventh race of that night’s card. Hanburger was present to deliver a trophy to the winner.
Les RichterIt was once reported that Richter, who was listed at 6-3, 236 pounds, had calves which measured 19½ inches in circumference and a chest expansion of 46 inches.
It was once rumored that Richter was in line to take over as the head football coach at his alma mater the University of California in place of future Hall of Fame coach Marv Levy who resigned from the school in 1963. The rumors persisted so much that he had to issue a statement to the contrary from Riverside International Raceway where he served as general manager and executive director.
Ed SabolSabol wanted his game crews at NFL Films (these crews usually numbered between two to four photographers) to capture everything possible at NFL games. With a film crew at every game, NFL Films would use 15 miles of 16mm color motion picture film each week during an NFL season.
Besides the love of film photography, Sabol’s other passion is flying. For many years he owned a Cessna airplane. When needed he would shoot film while flying his plane to incorporate aerial footage into an NFL Films production.
Deion SandersDeion, being the master of all traits that he is on the sports field, once tried his hand as a musician. Check out one of his videos if you dare.
Including his professional baseball career, Sanders played for a total of 18 professional sports teams.
Shannon SharpeSharpe’s eye-hand coordination and quickness was developed in his early years when he and his brother Sterling were hired to chase and catch chickens for local farmers in the Georgia area where they grew up.
Sharpe played in the 2005 World Series of Poker.
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