When Joe Greene was first told that his former school, the University of North Texas, was going to name a residence hall after him, he was taken back a bit.
“Who would have thought that? That is what it is, wow,” said Greene. “It is wow.”
That ‘wow’ has become a reality as Joe Greene Hall was officially dedicated on Saturday, Aug. 31 at North Texas, offering the most advanced student living opportunity to those on campus.
Joe Greene Hall offers double occupancy rooms to undergraduates with a focus on having multiple common areas, so students don’t just have to spend time in their rooms.
Greene is considered the best football player in North Texas history, going on to be the Steelers No. 1 draft pick in 1969, a four-time Super Bowl champion, a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and one of only two Steelers players to have their jersey retired.
North Texas honored Greene last year as well, building an eight-foot bronze statue, on a four-foot pedestal, of Greene at the main entrance of Apogee Stadium.
Greene, the first African-American member of North Texas’ Board of Regents, is thrilled to know that not just athletes, but students of all walks of life will be staying in the dormitory.
“I am very, very pleased about it,” said Greene. “It’s something that…while playing football at North Texas I can say I never thought and pursued being an All-American, playing in the NFL and making it to the Hall of Fame. But if I am in the arena that means the possibility is there for those things to happen.
“But having my name on a dorm, having a statue, is way beyond the realm of possibility. You don’t think about those things. I am not a millionaire. I can’t go out and build a building and put my name on it. That is special. It’s real close to Mr. (Dan) Rooney asking me to present him at the Hall of Fame.”
Greene’s connection to North Texas is even deeper than the statue and residence hall. In 2018, Greene and his three children created the Agnes Lucille Craft Greene Memorial Scholarship in honor of his late wife who died of breast cancer. The scholarship is something that will be presented yearly to students at the school whose parents have battled cancer, with breast cancer being a particular focus since that tragically took Agnes’ life.
A look at Joe Greene Hall.