Terrell Owens boycotted his Pro Football Hall of Fame induction four years ago, becoming the only living enshrinee not to attend the ceremony in Canton, Ohio. Instead, the receiver, miffed that it took him three years to go into the Hall, gave an induction speech at his alma mater, the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.
Owens hasn’t had anything to do with the Hall since.
But he has accepted an invitation from former 49ers teammate Bryant Young to attend Hall of Fame week in August to celebrate Young’s enshrinement.
“He knows my feelings about the Hall of Fame,” Owens said at the Dwight Clark Legacy Series during a panel discussion of Hall of Famers welcoming Young to the club, via Matt Maiocco of NBCSportsBayArea.com. “I wouldn’t be here or even considering going to the Hall of Fame if it weren’t for B.Y.”
Owens, who ranked second in all-time receiving yards (15,934), third in receiving touchdowns (153) and eighth in receptions (1,078) when he retired, has remained vocal in his criticism of the selection process. Forty-nine media members, including Dan Fouts, James Lofton and Bill Polian, serve as selectors.
“As far as my relationship with the Hall of Fame, I don’t have one,” Owens said. “But when it comes to being there for your brothers, obviously, for a teammate like B.Y., the way he showed up every day, just the professionalism, the way he approached his craft, and me seeing (that). He’s like a gentle giant. He’s quiet, but when the beast needs to come out, you saw it on the field.
“So for me to sit in that locker room and walk into that locker room every day and see how he approached work and just marvel at his professionalism, the way he played, I wouldn’t probably be here. But this is a huge moment. It’s not about me. This is me celebrating my teammate. Prior to that, I probably had no earthly idea when I would probably step foot back in Canton.”