The 49ers have announced the creation of the Edward DeBartolo Sr. 49ers Hall of Fame. The team Hall of Fame has been established to recognize players, coaches and executives who have made exceptional contributions to the organization.
Jed York made the announcement and I'm wondering how much he had to do with the development of the team Hall of Fame. While everybody understands the 49ers history, he seems to be helping in the push to make the past as much a part of this team as the future.
“As someone who was raised alongside 49ers legends,” said team President Jed York, “I am honored to be announcing the creation of the Edward DeBartolo Sr. 49ers Hall of Fame. This exclusive group will be comprised of those who have made our franchise what it is today.”
According to the team, as a prerequisite for induction, all 49ers Hall of Fame candidates must have displayed one or more of the following qualifications: outstanding production and performance on the field, key contributions to the team’s success, and/or the embodiment of the spirit and essence of the San Francisco 49ers.
As with most team-based Halls of Fame that's a bit of a nebulous description. Fortunately most folks can figure out who their team Hall of Famers are. For the purposes of this Hall of Fame, players who have had their jersey numbers already retired by the organization or have been selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame have been automatically enshrined in the 49ers Hall of Fame by the organization. A plaque with their likeness will be displayed prominently in the Hall of Fame at Candlestick Park. The initial members of the Hall of Fame will be recognized formally during Alumni Weekend on October 11, 2009, when the 49ers host the Atlanta Falcons.
I've listed the initial automatically eligible class after the jump. Just a heads-up, but it does not include Jerry Rice. He hasn't met the automatic qualifiers thus no automatic eligibility. Of course, one would think being the greatest wide receiver ever would be enough of an automatic qualifier. Either way, obviously he'll be in sooner rather than later.
The initial class includes:
John Henry Johnson
Bob St. Clair