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clevestinks
01-03-2007, 08:32 PM
By Teresa Varley

Steelers.com



Dick Hoak has played with a Hall of Fame running back in John Henry Johnson. He coached one in Franco Harris. And he coached a potential future Hall of Famer in Jerome Bettis.



But one of the toughest things for Hoak as the Steelers running backs coach steps into retirement is going to be missing out on the career of a young and upcoming running back, Willie Parker.



"I'm going to miss out on how good he's going to be," said Hoak. "That's the toughest."



For someone who has coached the Steelers running backs for 35 years, that is quite the compliment. It speaks volumes about what Parker, an undrafted free agent that Hoak had never heard of before he signed with the team, has accomplished since coming to the Steelers.



"I'll tell you when I heard about him," said Hoak. "During the draft, when you get to the sixth and seventh round, we go and call people we think are going to be free-agents, or people that aren't going to be drafted. We came out and made some calls. I was never even told to call Willie. After the seventh round, we worked with somebody in the scouting department as to getting these guys to sign as free agents.



"I was working with Dan (Rooney, Jr.). I walked out of the room and he started walking down the hall and he said, 'Don't worry about it. I got you two free agents.' He said, 'I got you Willie Parker from North Carolina.' I said, Willie who? He said, 'Willie Parker from North Carolina and a kid from Syracuse.' So, I had my two guys and I went home early that night.



It didn't take long for Hoak to find out who Parker was and what he was all about.



"The first time I saw Willie and saw how fast he was, I knew we had something special," said Hoak. "He had something that you can't teach. You can't teach what Willie has. We haven't had one of those in a long time.



"Willie is just an amazing story. Here is a guy that came out of North Carolina and hardly played. He's just done a tremendous job and he's only going to get better. He's been great and he's going to get better."



And you can be sure, Hoak will be kicked back next fall watching him do just that.

tony hipchest
01-03-2007, 08:43 PM
for those FANS who still doubt w. parker, (i doubt theres too many now) i suggest to take a step back and listen to the master:

"I'm going to miss out on how good he's going to be," said Hoak.
"He had something that you can't teach. You can't teach what Willie has.

He's just done a tremendous job and he's only going to get better. He's been great and he's going to get better."



i'll probably have to bump this thread in april when people start fantasizing about jerome jr. in the draft, or even worse...cedric humes.

Hines0wnz
01-04-2007, 06:53 PM
for those FANS who still doubt w. parker, (i doubt theres too many now) i suggest to take a step back and listen to the master:



i'll probably have to bump this thread in april when people start fantasizing about jerome jr. in the draft, or even worse...cedric humes.

You are probably right because it never dies, it just goes quiet for a few days. By the time April rolls around then it will be at a fever pitch again.

polamalufan43
01-04-2007, 07:06 PM
Well, we know that Willie is a keeper. We can rest on that untill April.

~Polamalufan43:tt02:

In Cowher We Trust
01-08-2007, 04:13 PM
Willie is the Future!

Livinginthe past
01-08-2007, 04:31 PM
for those FANS who still doubt w. parker, (i doubt theres too many now) i suggest to take a step back and listen to the master:



i'll probably have to bump this thread in april when people start fantasizing about jerome jr. in the draft, or even worse...cedric humes.

Hey!

I hope you aint talking down Cedric Humes - the guy is a 'big back' which automtically makes him 'the next Bettis'.

NM

tony hipchest
01-08-2007, 05:41 PM
Hey!

I hope you aint talking down Cedric Humes - the guy is a 'big back' which automtically makes him 'the next Bettis'.

NMwell, the "Hume-an wrecking ball" definitely had nick name potential.

fansince'76
01-08-2007, 05:46 PM
I hope you aint talking down Cedric Humes - the guy is a 'big back' which automtically makes him 'the next Bettis'.

Anytime during the NFL season when a "big back" (230+ lbs) has a decent game, they are usually being called that by a Steelers fan somewhere, accompanied by a post to sign him. It's comical, really.

Livinginthe past
01-08-2007, 06:02 PM
Anytime during the NFL season when a "big back" (230+ lbs) has a decent game, they are usually being called that by a Steelers fan somewhere, accompanied by a post to sign him. It's comical, really.

9 carries for 23 yards and a TD was his preseason total - mind you the hype started right after he was drafted....in the 7th round.

NM