As part of this year's Draft Weekend, the Pro Football Hall of Fame will honor nine deceased members of the Classes of 2020 and 2021 with a 90-minute special scheduled to air Saturday, May, 1 on the NFL Network and Tuesday, May 4, on ESPN2, the Hall announced Thursday.
Those honored posthumously are Bobby Dillon, Winston Hill, Alex Karras, Steve Sabol, Duke Slater, Mac Speedie, Ed Sprinkle, George Young and Bill Nunn. All but Nunn are members of the Hall’s Centennial Class of 2020.
Nunn is the contributor inductee for the Class of 2021.
“From its inception, the Centennial Class of 2020 has been unique,” the Hall’s CEO and president David Baker said in a prepared statement. “A special blue ribbon-panel elected a 20-person class to commemorate the founding of the National Football League, with enshrinees dating to the earliest eras of pro football.
“To recognize eight members of this class, along with trailblazer Bill Nunn of the Class of 2021, in this special way brings us great excitement and joy. We will honor these men and their contributions to the game in May and again in August as part of ‘The Greatest Gathering in Football.’ “
The Hall’s broadcast will feature video footage of each enshrinee and the unveiling of their busts in Canton. After the program, families of each inductee will place the bronzed busts in the Hall of Fame Gallery inside the museum.
Included among the guests and dignitaries will be NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.
All nine honorees will also be recognized this summer during their respective enshrinements – the Centennial Class of 2020 on Saturday, August 7, and the Class of 2021 on Sunday, Aug. 8.
“Honoring the legacies of these newest members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, in conjunction with the NFL draft, reminds us that the players of today stand on the shoulders of those who came before them,” Baker said. “Every player chosen on Draft Weekend can look to these nine men – legends who form a line reaching back to the NFL’s earliest years – and learn important lessons about courage, commitment and excellence to help him in his own journey.”