There are days you will always remember, and I am one of those lucky enough to have been there on two special days in the career of former Steelers coach Bill Cowher, who is soon to be enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame as a member of the Class of 2020.
I remember the day Cowher was hired by the Steelers, his introductory press conference surrounded by his three young daughters, who now have families of their own.
And I remember the day he retired, with a Lombardi trophy from the team's victory in Super Bowl XL nearby.
With his Hall of Fame enshrinement approaching in August, today's Throwback Thursday takes us back to those two special days.
January 21, 1992
Coach Bill Cowher hired
January 5, 2007
Coach Bill Cowher retires
Bill Cowher was introduced as the 15th head coach of the Pittsburgh Steelers, succeeding Chuck Noll, who had led the Steelers to four Super Bowl Championships during his tenure. Cowher never sought to replace Noll, but instead to carry on the tradition that he had established.
"Chuck Noll is a legend, and it would be a mistake to ignore that success," said Cowher, during his introductory press conference. "It's something we won't try to put behind us but will try to build on."
Cowher spent 15 seasons as the Steelers coach, leading the team to postseason appearances in each of his first six seasons, tying an NFL record. In his 15-year tenure the Steelers made 10 postseason appearances, won eight division titles, played in six AFC Championship games and two Super Bowls, winning Super Bowl XL. Cowher ended his Steelers career with an overall record of 161-99-1 (.619), including a 149-90-1 (.623) mark in the regular season.
During his retirement press conference among those he thanked were Steelers Nation.
"To the Steelers fans in Pittsburgh and the fans around the country – second to none," said Cowher. "I want to thank you for your passion and your support. I've said this before. I'm a part of you. You can take the people out of Pittsburgh, but you will never take the Pittsburgh out of people. I'm one of you. 'Yinz' know what I mean."
Bill Cowher visited the Hall of Fame ahead of his enshrinement