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1980s: "Remembering L. C. Greenwood"

Although L.C. Greenwood displayed the qualities of NFL Hall of Famers and was a finalist twice for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, he never was elected. He was a Pittsburgh legend nevertheless. No doubt about it. During his 13-year career with the Steelers, he helped Pittsburgh win four Super Bowls and seven division titles.

When Greenwood died on Sunday, team Chairman Dan Rooney said in a statement, “L.C. was one of the most beloved Steelers during the most successful period in team history and he will be missed by the entire organization. He will forever be remembered for what he meant to the Steelers both on and off the field.”

The Steelers drafted L.C.Greenwood in 1969, the same year they picked Joe Greene in the NFL draft. For 11 years, he teamed with “Mean Joe” at left tackle as part of the legendary “Steel Curtain,” the defense that brought glory and fame to the Steelers.

"L.C. was a quiet guy; he didn’t attempt to position himself as the center of attention even though he played an integral part of that front four," said former Steelers scout Bill Nunn, who had scouted Mr. Greenwood. "I used to call him and Jack Ham the quiet assassins because neither one of them would say a word, or put on a show for you. They both just went about their business quietly."

His speed, his athleticism and his tactics earned L.C Greenwood a reputation of a great player. He also was famous for his gold-colored shoes he wore on the football field and his nickname “Hollywood Bags” — he earned it because he claimed he kept his bags ready to go so he could leave quickly when Hollywood calls.

Mr. Greenwood lived in Point Breeze after being cut by the Steelers before the 1982 season. He died last Sunday at age 67.

— Mila Sanina  

Tonight: Wednesday, May 1, 2013 | 6:30 p.m. | Heinz History Center

Celebrate the release of the new book “Allegheny City: A History of Pittsburgh’s North Side" with co-authors Dan Rooney, chairman of the Pittsburgh Steelers, and architectural historian Carol Peterson. Rooney and Peterson will present a short program about Allegheny City, moderated by History Center President and CEO Andy Masich. Signed copies of the book will be on sale at the Museum Shop for $24.95.


Admission to the event is free and available at the door.
Tonight: Wednesday, May 1, 2013 | 6:30 p.m. | Heinz History Center
Celebrate the release of the new book “Allegheny City: A History of Pittsburgh’s North Side" with co-authors Dan Rooney, chairman of the Pittsburgh Steelers, and architectural historian Carol Peterson. Rooney and Peterson will present a short program about Allegheny City, moderated by History Center President and CEO Andy Masich. Signed copies of the book will be on sale at the Museum Shop for $24.95.

Admission to the event is free and available at the door.

On This Day in Pittsburgh History: December 27, 1975
The Steelers wave Terrible Towels for the first time as they take the Three Rivers field for a divisional playoff against Baltimore. Andy Russell wins the game on a 93-yard return for a touchdown.  [Wikipedia] 
From Pittsburgh Magazine (2010):


In 1975, Cope’s bosses at WTAE Radio asked him to come up with a clever promotional gimmick for the station that would be embraced by Steelers fans. After considering black masks emblazoned with then-head coach Chuck Noll’s motto, “Whatever It Takes,” Cope came up with a less expensive idea: a gold rally towel.  Cope spent several weeks promoting the idea on the radio, with little apparent success. He even took a sample towel into the Steelers’ locker room for a straw poll."I think your idea stinks," said linebacker Jack Ham.  One can imagine Cope reacting to Ham’s assessment with his trademark, “Feh!” (more)

On This Day in Pittsburgh History: December 27, 1975

The Steelers wave Terrible Towels for the first time as they take the Three Rivers field for a divisional playoff against Baltimore. Andy Russell wins the game on a 93-yard return for a touchdown.  [Wikipedia

From Pittsburgh Magazine (2010):

In 1975, Cope’s bosses at WTAE Radio asked him to come up with a clever promotional gimmick for the station that would be embraced by Steelers fans. After considering black masks emblazoned with then-head coach Chuck Noll’s motto, “Whatever It Takes,” Cope came up with a less expensive idea: a gold rally towel.  Cope spent several weeks promoting the idea on the radio, with little apparent success. He even took a sample towel into the Steelers’ locker room for a straw poll.

"I think your idea stinks," said linebacker Jack Ham.  One can imagine Cope reacting to Ham’s assessment with his trademark, “Feh!” (more)

On This Day in Pittsburgh History: December 23, 1972 

In the first Steelers playoff in 25 years (and their first postseason win), Franco Harris salvages a Terry Bradshaw pass in the greatest NFL play in history—to beat the Raiders 13-7 at Three RiversArt Rooney and Bob Prince miss the play while in the elevator to the locker room. [Wikipedia; Pro Football Hall of Fame]

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Sept. 20, 1964: If you’re a baby boomer, you’ve probably seen this photograph before. It’s been called the “agony of defeat picture” — a phrase obviously coined by a boomer familiar with the dramatic introduction of ABC’s Wide World of Sports.
The image was made at Pitt Stadium on a Sunday afternoon in autumn of 1964. New York Giants quarterback Y.A. Tittle had just been the recipient of a ferocious hit by Steelers defensive end John Baker. Tittle was 38 years old — ancient, by football standards. He was one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks. But the moment this picture was made, Tittle’s career was nearing a painful conclusion. “That was the end of my dream,” he’d later say.
The photographer was the Post-Gazette’s Morris Berman, himself something of a legend. You’ve probably seen his 1945 picture of the bodies of Italian dictator Benito Mussolini and his mistress hanging upside down. Those who worked with Berman at the PG say he always wore a suit, a tie and a smile. We often come across Berman’s photographs in the PG archives. They stand out as being carefully composed, and show that Berman had a knack for capturing moments that were at once surprising and representative of whatever news event he was covering.
Berman’s image of Tittle is one of a handful of football pictures that transcend the game. It stands as a reminder of what we all must face — aging, and the deterioration of our skills and abilities. In Berman’s picture, Tittle looks like a man who has lost his place in the world. It’s a painful and not uncommon thing.
Oh, and one other note: The Steelers won the game, 27-24.
— Steve Mellon

pgdigs:

Sept. 20, 1964: If you’re a baby boomer, you’ve probably seen this photograph before. It’s been called the “agony of defeat picture” — a phrase obviously coined by a boomer familiar with the dramatic introduction of ABC’s Wide World of Sports.

The image was made at Pitt Stadium on a Sunday afternoon in autumn of 1964. New York Giants quarterback Y.A. Tittle had just been the recipient of a ferocious hit by Steelers defensive end John Baker. Tittle was 38 years old — ancient, by football standards. He was one of the NFL’s best quarterbacks. But the moment this picture was made, Tittle’s career was nearing a painful conclusion. “That was the end of my dream,” he’d later say.

The photographer was the Post-Gazette’s Morris Berman, himself something of a legend. You’ve probably seen his 1945 picture of the bodies of Italian dictator Benito Mussolini and his mistress hanging upside down. Those who worked with Berman at the PG say he always wore a suit, a tie and a smile. We often come across Berman’s photographs in the PG archives. They stand out as being carefully composed, and show that Berman had a knack for capturing moments that were at once surprising and representative of whatever news event he was covering.

Berman’s image of Tittle is one of a handful of football pictures that transcend the game. It stands as a reminder of what we all must face — aging, and the deterioration of our skills and abilities. In Berman’s picture, Tittle looks like a man who has lost his place in the world. It’s a painful and not uncommon thing.

Oh, and one other note: The Steelers won the game, 27-24.

— Steve Mellon