It’s maybe essentially the most well-known play in skilled soccer historical past, however Franco Harris doesn’t bear in mind it in any respect — by no means has.
That’s what the legendary Pittsburgh Steelers fullback and Hall of Famer stated of what’s reverentially referred to as the Immaculate Reception. Flashback to 1972 when the Oakland Raiders have been main the Steelers in a playoff recreation with 22 seconds to play. Quarterback Terry Bradshaw’s go bounced off both the helmet of Raiders’ Jack Tatum or the palms of Steelers’ John Fuqua when Harris grabbed it, ran it in for a landing and the win.
The play continues to be controversial with pundits debating whether or not his catch was professional for almost 40 years.
But don’t ask Harris to settle the problem. “I don’t remember,” he stated. “I left the backfield and I have no recollection of anything, it’s really strange. But it’s on film, so…”
Although Harris will perpetually be related to that play, he’ll even be remembered for his different accomplishments on the sphere in his 12 years with the Steelers and one with the Seattle Seahawks. He was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1990.
While Harris’ efficiency on the gridiron is known, he additionally has an extended historical past with vogue.
In an interview from his residence in Pittsburgh, Harris stated one of many first companies he began within the Nineteen Seventies was display screen printing T-shirts. “I’ve always had a connection to the apparel industry,” he stated. “I never planned it, but certain things just seem to have drawn me to it.”
After getting his toes moist with the display screen printing enterprise, he began creating nightshirts for ladies in Steelers colours within the early ’80s with the names and numbers of gamers on the again. The shirts weren’t NFL sanctioned so there was no formal league identification on them, however they have been clearly meant to enchantment to followers of the sport.
At the age of 71, Harris has labored with the Pro Football Hall of Fame to get the license to create Game Day Socks, a group that replicates the sport jerseys of a few of the sport’s most well-known gamers with each their names and numbers woven onto the again.
The socks, which launched this week within the run-up to the Hall of Fame recreation between the Steelers and Dallas Cowboys on Aug. 5 and induction ceremonies on Aug. 7 and eight, retail for $24.99. The first assortment is centered round this 12 months’s inductees, which embody Peyton Manning, Troy Polamalu and Charles Woodson, however will be expanded later. “It’s so exciting for me to honor the legacy of these great players and be part of their game-day gear,” Harris stated. Game Day Socks enable followers to point out their allegiance to their favourite gamers and groups “from the jersey on their back to the socks on their feet.”
The socks are constituted of sweat-wicking premium yarns, have additional cushioning and have Silverclean, an anti-odor expertise that Harris and client merchandise professional Tom Davis developed in 2010. “It keeps products free and clear of bacteria and odor-free,” he stated. The silver expertise boasts the socks will be worn 17 instances with out washing.
Harris stated he’s all the time been fascinated about vogue, and laughed in regards to the outrageous outfits he and his contemporaries wore again within the ’70s. “We thought we were fly, we thought we were so cool with those big collars and bell-bottoms,” he stated with fun. “Fashion was a whole other world back then.”
Then, and now, followers like to point out their allegiance to their favourite gamers and groups, and Game Day Socks is meant to enchantment to these prospects. “People love to show their colors,” he stated.
Harris plans to attend the Hall of Fame ceremonies in Canton, Ohio, subsequent month to have a good time the honorees, 5 of whom are Pittsburgh Steelers. “That makes me feel good,” he stated.
Before the pandemic, Harris stated he spent loads of time on the highway, however that stopped when the pandemic hit. “Life after football has been business and travel,” he stated. “I keep busy with event-related stuff and try to balance life with business, charity work and fun events.”