Thanks to a resolution passed on Tuesday by Pennsylvania’s U.S. senators, Sept. 7 is now designated “Chuck Noll Day” in order to honor former Pittsburgh Steelers head coach Chuck Noll, who died June 13 at his Sewickley home at the age of 82.
“Chuck Noll Day” will coincide with the Steelers 2014 season opener against the Cleveland Browns at Heinz Field. The Steelers are also expected to honor Noll’s legacy throughout the 2014 season with some sort of jersey patch or helmet decal.
During his 23 seasons as the head coach of the Steelers, Noll led the team to four Super Bowl titles and nine Division Championships. He won 193 regular season games and 16 playoff games during his tenure, and was induced into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1993.
“Chuck Noll was one of the greatest coaches in NFL history and played a huge part in turning the once downtrodden Steelers franchise into the powerhouse it has been for the last 40-plus years,” Republic Pat Toomey said in introducing the resolution on the Senate floor. “The City of Pittsburgh and football fans across Pennsylvania will miss Coach Noll.
“Chuck Noll provided the culture of success on and off the field,” Democrat Bob Casey said. “Not only was he a great representative of Pittsburgh and a legendary coach who reached the heights of his profession, but more importantly, he inspired his players, his staff, and the entire Steelers Nation to strive for greatness.
“This resolution honors his milestones of creating the Steel Curtain and winning four Super Bowls. We will never forget the impact he had on all of Western Pennsylvania and Steelers fans across the nation and worldwide.”
The full text of the resolution is below.
Honoring the life and career of Charles ‘‘Chuck” Noll by designating September 7, 2014, as ‘‘Chuck Noll Day”.
Whereas Chuck Noll was born on January 5, 1932, in Cleveland, Ohio;
Whereas Chuck Noll excelled at multiple positions on the football field during a preparatory career at Benedictine High School in Cleveland, Ohio and during a college career at the University of Dayton;
Whereas, after being drafted in the 20th round of the 1953 National Football League Draft by his hometown team, the Cleveland Browns, Chuck Noll enjoyed a seven-year career as a linebacker and offensive lineman;
Whereas, after his playing career ended, Chuck Noll joined coaching staffs headed by two future Hall-of-Famers, Sid Gillman of the San Diego Chargers and Don Shula of the Baltimore Colts;
Whereas, after serving as an assistant coach for nearly a decade, Chuck Noll was selected by the Rooney family to serve as 14th head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers football team on January 27, 1969;
Whereas Pittsburgh Steelers owner Dan Rooney is quoted as saying ‘‘hiring Chuck Noll was the best decision we ever made for the Steelers”;
Whereas, in 1972, in Chuck Noll’s fourth season as head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers, the Pittsburgh Steelers won 11 games and made the playoffs for the first time since 1947;
Whereas, on January 12, 1975, the Pittsburgh Steelers dynasty was born when Chuck Noll led the Pittsburgh Steelers to a victory over the Minnesota Vikings to win Super Bowl IX-the first of the Pittsburgh Steelers’ now six Super Bowl titles;
Whereas, over the five football seasons after winning Super Bowl IX, Chuck Noll’s Pittsburgh Steelers went on to capture an additional three Super Bowl titles-Super Bowl X and XIII, both by defeating the Dallas Cowboys, and Super Bowl XIV, by defeating the Los Angeles Rams;
Whereas Chuck Noll is best known for masterminding the ‘‘Steel Curtain”, one of the most stout and prolific defensive units in National Football League history;
Whereas both Chuck Noll’s ability to identify talent and his hands-on coaching technique led to Hall of Fame careers for several of Chuck Noll’s players, including Franco Harris, Jack Ham, Lynn Swann, Terry Bradshaw, ‘‘Mean” Joe Greene, John Stallworth, Jack Lambert, Mel Blount, Mike Webster, Dermontti Dawson, and Rod Woodson;
Whereas, following 23 football seasons and 193 football game wins, including a record four Super Bowl titles as a head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers, Chuck Noll was enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio as part of the Class of 1993; and
Whereas, on June 13, 2014, Chuck Noll passed away surrounded by loved ones at his home in Sewickley, Pennsylvania at the age of 82: Now, therefore, be it
Resolved, That the Senate-
(1) designates September 7, 2014, as ‘‘Chuck Noll Day”; and
(2) recognizes the life and career of Chuck Noll and his contributions to the city of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and the National Football League.