Harold Carmichael to Wait One More Year for Hall Enshrinement

Ed Kracz

Harold Carmichael waited more than 30 years to get into the Hall of Fame.

After finally learning on Jan. 15 that he would be enshrined, he was looking forward to celebrating his induction later this summer. Now, however, the former Eagles receiving great will have to wait another year after the NFL canceled its Hall of Fame weekend which had been scheduled for early August.

"Well, I've just got to wait another year," Carmichael said on the Eagles’ official web site. "I waited for 30-some years already, so one year probably won't make a difference. It's kind of a letdown a little bit, but you want to get all of these things – the rings, the jacket, the bust – you want to do all of that stuff and you want to celebrate with family and fans, and it's a downer, but I can wait.”

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the league decided to wait until 2021 to hold its enshrinement ceremonies as well as the game that precedes it. That game was supposed to be between the Cowboys and Steelers on Aug. 6. with the induction ceremonies set for Aug. 8. Those two teams will still play the game, except now it will be next August.

Also, that weekend, the NFL will enshrine two Hall of Fame classes.

"The Hall will honor the Centennial Class of 2020 next August, along with what promises to be an equally spectacular Class of 2021, as part of a multi-day celebration of football with an atmosphere that will deliver for fans 'Twice the Fun in '21,’” said Pro Football Hall of Fame President and CEO David Baker in a statement released last week when the decision was made.

Carmichael is part of the NFL's Centennial Slate of inductees, an expanded class of 20 new members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, coinciding with the league's 100th season celebration.

"I was just talking with David Baker and he was telling that it's going to be very exciting and a lot of fun when it happens in 2021,” said Carmichael on the Eagles’ web site. “I believe what they're going to do. The Hall of Fame always does it the right way and I'm excited about being able to do it next year. It's been a long time. I've been waiting on it a long time. Again, another year, what can you do?"

Carmichael is part of the NFL's Centennial Slate of inductees, an expanded class of 20 new members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, coinciding with the league's 100th season celebration.

That it took so long for Carmichael top get into the Hall was a snub. It should not have come down to a special vote in an expanded class, either.

He played 12 seasons with the Eagles, catching 589 passes for 8,978 yards and 79 touchdowns. Both the yardage and touchdown totals still stand as the most in team history.

He made four Pro Bowls and in 1973 he led the NFL in catches with 67 for 1,116 yards and nine touchdowns.

Carmichael never slowed down in the postseason, either, making nine catches for 203 yards and three touchdowns in just two playoff games in 1979 then, in the Super Bowl 1980 season, he made 13 receptions for 174 yards and one score.

In seven total playoff appearances, Carmichael had 29 catches for 465 yards and six TDs.

When he retired following the 1985 season, the held the NFL record for most consecutive games with at least one catch at 127.

Five modern-era players, a group comprised of Steve Atwater, Isaac Bruce, Steve Hutchinson, Edgerrin James and Troy Polamalu; coaches Bill Cowher and Jimmy Johnson; and three contributors, Steve Sabol, Paul Tagliabue and George Young, were set to be enshrined this year.

"It's going to be OK," he said. "When it happens, it's going to be quite a celebration."

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