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PITTSBURGH (93.7 The Fan) – The only current Steelers player to win a Super Bowl with the team is worried about the Steeler Way. Ben Roethlisberger said the loss of Dan Rooney has been a major impact to the culture around the team.


Roethlisberger said there wasn’t the music in the locker room before because of Mr. Rooney. Ben said it was always that way and as guys started to leave the locker room that had that tradition, he, Brett Keisel, Maurkice Pouncey and others tried to keep it going.

“New guys would come in and play music & I was the grumpy old man who didn’t want music,” Roethlisberger said Wednesday. “I had a conversation with guys like Cam Heyward and Vince Williams & told them the reason we didn’t do it because if Mr. (Dan) Rooney came in the locker room, you wanted to hear what he had to say.”

“Whether it was about Steelers, about life, whatever. He was like a grandfather to all of us.”

“So much love for him and obviously as new guys came in and Mr. Rooney wasn’t around. We tried to pass that on and even after he passed I tried to tell guys I wait for him to walk through that door to come talk to you. You want to listen to him because he was so soft spoken and so wise.”

“That was always my thing of why I didn’t want the music because you never had it when he was around. I wanted to carry that on. The last couple of years, I relented and stopped being the grumpy guy. If they want to listen to music, they can listen to music.”

The issue of music might just be a part of a larger discussion about culture and tradition and history. Just because you play music doesn’t mean you don’t care or don’t respect those before you.

Roethlisberger asked about his concern about the franchise losing the ‘Steeler Way’.

“Yeah, of course you do, you worry about it,” Roethlisberger said. “There can’t be many guys, a handful in the locker room, who remember who Dan Rooney was. You can only tell guys those stories so much before they are like, ‘it’s just some guy talking’. You can pass on tradition all you want, but the further you get away from something the harder it is to do.”

“There’s probably some veteran guys that I played with that watch us or hear the people talking and shake their heads and say ‘that’s not the Steeler Way or that’s not the way we used to do it’. That’s the way things go and I’m sure the 70s team looked at us, it just happens.”

There have been a few former Steelers now that have indeed said multiple things, some very pointed criticism. Roethlisberger said with a smile he might be the one after he retires on social media with issues about the current team.

Right now he’s trying to get his team past a blowout loss in Cincinnati and on to facing their hated rival. He looks at the Bengals game as just a bad loss, like old gum that you just spit out. Roethlisberger said he won’t be into big talks right now.

“If you have to give guys a message at this point in the year with where we are, then maybe it’s time to get guys in there that don’t need a message,” Roethlisberger said. “People need to understand what this is about.”
Man... this just makes me sad. 

I remember seeing Dan Rooney walking -- yes, WALKING -- to the Chargers game in 2003. By himself in late December, no less. It was an afternoon game, final game of the season vs. the Chargers. We got there 5+ hours early across from McDonald's so we could get a curb spot (for easy exit), wander around and hit some sports bars before the game. And there's flippin' Dan Rooney walking down the street. No limo. No entourage. We yelled to him and he gave this little wave and nod and kept walking. Still blows my mind. 

Old. School. Smokin It's one of those things I'd think was folklore if I hadn't seen it with my own eyes. 

It's hard to imagine myself continuing to follow the Steelers closely once Ben leaves. Again, it makes me sad.
(12-03-2021, 11:54 AM)mcmillenandwife Wrote: [ -> ]Man... this just makes me sad. 

I remember seeing Dan Rooney walking -- yes, WALKING -- to the Chargers game in 2003. By himself in late December, no less. It was an afternoon game, final game of the season vs. the Chargers. We got there 5+ hours early across from McDonald's so we could get a curb spot (for easy exit), wander around and hit some sports bars before the game. And there's flippin' Dan Rooney walking down the street. No limo. No entourage. We yelled to him and he gave this little wave and nod and kept walking. Still blows my mind. 

Old. School. Smokin It's one of those things I'd think was folklore if I hadn't seen it with my own eyes. 

It's hard to imagine myself continuing to follow the Steelers closely once Ben leaves. Again, it makes me sad.

  I thought the same thing Tim. After Ben leaves, I don't know how I will have any desire to watch the Steelers.... I probably will here and there. But not religiously like I do now...

  The defense is watered down.  NFL games are No More Fun and The Steelers will be the Browns.   No James Harrison, no Polomalu, No Bus, no Ben...
Generational differences have reared their ugly head in most sports.  Steeler fans like to live in the past because it was so great.  Those memories help make problematic days a bit better.

I'm not sure any coach or nfl owner can fight the trends in the game today.  Tomlin does not seem to have that ability or maybe just finds it easier to give in.  A coach should have an ability to impact the emotional behavior and maturity of a team.  Some owners can.  Especially if they are like Dan and the Chief.  

Athletes have become more pampered.  Their commitment trends toward themselves rather than the team.  Tomlin has not shown an ability to alter that move.  He let AB, Blount and Bell run roughshod over the organization.  Harrison was dismissed as unimportant.  The way he's handled the current crop of tiktok "stars" leads me to believe he's not learned from the past.  Therefore he's bound to repeat it.  

I think great coaches like Belicheat and Reid have found a way to get the "modern" player on board.  Tomlin might have the W/L record to get into the HOF but I think Ben carried his water.  

Winning cures or covers up a lot of ills.  I'm not sure Tomlin can motivate this squad to more than a couple of wins over the rest of this season.  If that's the case his "never had a losing season" standard will be smashed and maybe a new one established.  I hope not.  It's sad to watch a proud tradition tarnished.
Stop.

I was at the Jets/Steelers game when Bradshaw threw out his arm.   It was over.   Mark Malone was the future.  Franco went to friggin SEATTLE.....   TURF TOE took out the invulnerable Lambert....

Then came Cower.   Then came Ben.  

Life goes on, Gentlemen.  Anyone can be a fair weather fan.

I don't remember ever saying, "Black & Gold for LIFE!!!........well, unless they play music in the locker room"
(12-05-2021, 04:04 AM)RaynorShyne Wrote: [ -> ]Stop.

I was at the Jets/Steelers game when Bradshaw threw out his arm.   It was over.   Mark Malone was the future.  Franco went to friggin SEATTLE.....   TURF TOE took out the invulnerable Lambert....

Then came Cower.   Then came Ben.  

Life goes on, Gentlemen.  Anyone can be a fair weather fan.

I don't remember ever saying, "Black & Gold for LIFE!!!........well, unless they play music in the locker room"


No, this is different, man. It's very different. I loved the Steelers (and the NFL, for that matter) through the Malone, Brister, O'Donnell and Stewart eras. I still loved them when Kent Graham got the start. I loved Mike Tomczak. I didn't love Jim Miller, but I still loved the team. There was never a question about it, ever, regardless of record, good times and bad.  

It's different now. It's not the same game anymore. Even Ben recognizes it. 

Now it's more about big business and wokeness and corporate B.S. and pandering. Rule changes and game play are meant to appeal to a different, younger group of people. Players are about TikTok instead of team; followers and fantasy points are more important than wins. I guess that's what the NFL thinks they need to do to survive. Maybe they're right? But it's not for me.

At 53, I'm an old guy now. The NFL is trying to figure out out to build a younger fan base, and they're tailoring the product to suit that fan base. They're not concerned about alienating someone like me.

Which they have done, quite effectively. 

My last great attachment is Ben. He's the final thread to what Steelers football is supposed to be. Cam is cut from this cloth, but my roots don't run as deep with him. 

I can't stand Goodell. I don't totally trust Art Rooney II. I think Tomlin, while still a great coach, has run his course in Pittsburgh.

Maybe a new coach would reinvigorate my interest? But who knows when that will happen?

I used to not think twice about dropping $500+ (often several times a year) to make a trip to Pittsburgh to see a game, despite 7-hour (and later 11-hour) round trip drive times. I'd do it multiple times a year. Not to mention all of the jerseys and collectibles we'd buy as a family, plus NFL Sunday Ticket, etc. I wouldn't even consider doing those things now (and I have a lot more money now than I did back then). 

In my view, I'm not abandoning the Steelers; the Steelers (and more appropriately, the NFL) have abandoned me.
Tim,

You pretty much laid out my feelings about the state of the Steelers/NFL That said, although I haven’t been around here much the last year or so, but after these many decades, I can’t imagine life without this site.

Since when was it 1997? when you started this site. Since then I’ve had 10 different employers, built and sold two financial service companies, retired 3 times, and moved 4 times. I may not be posting a lot, but I’m on the site a bit.
(12-06-2021, 12:29 PM)dbsfgyd1 Wrote: [ -> ]Tim,

You pretty much laid out my feelings about the state of the Steelers/NFL  That said, although I haven’t been around here much the last year or so, but after these many decades, I can’t imagine life without this site.

Since when was it 1997? when you started this site. Since then I’ve had 10 different employers, built and sold two financial service companies, retired 3 times,  and moved 4 times. I may not be posting a lot, but I’m on the site a bit.

Ha! Yeah, we've been cheering on the Steelers together for a LONG time, Dave. Glad you're still here, man. Thumbsup Pi_hippie Like you, a LOT has changed for me. More than I ever could've imagined. Although I've only lived in 3 different houses and had 3 employers during that time. Not to mention the end of a long marriage followed by the blessing of falling in love and marrying one of my closest friends from high school.

I got my first PC in December 1996, right after my son Craig was born. A good friend who was a computer nerd built it for me. My first attempt at this site was made using MS Publisher. I'd get super-pissed when I published the pages to Tripod ( Laugh ) because the formatting would change and what showed up online looked very different from what I painstakingly laid out in the program.

My computer nerd friend was building rudimentary websites using HTML. So I would go to his house to hang out, and I'd sit and watch him create the code for his videogame-based websites. This was in early 1997. After a few times of observing, I'd picked up enough to start making my own basic site using code instead of the Publisher program. The biggest revelation was the "view source" option to see how other websites I like were coded. I started studying this, copying things I liked, and pretty soon I was off and running with a site that, during that time period ('98 to '01), was pretty cutting edge.

You might remember I stepped away for a good 10+ years after I took the job with Fender in 2005. Bill from Hanover (with some technical help from SteelerKraut) looked after things for several years, not really updating the site (which I still updated slightly from time to time), but keeping the message board alive. Bill eventually stepped away and things were mostly dormant, although the message board lived on thanks to a handful of folks like you. 

Once I started digitizing games and uploading them to YouTube -- and YouTube started pulling them down at the behest of the NFL, which pissed me off to no end -- I decided to see if it was possible to make the games available via this site. And here we are. 

Pi_bigsmile

Of course, the site still looks like Tripod site circa Y2K. Laugh My HTML skillz haven't improved since then. I've picked up juuust enough to add the game videos, which has made it worthwhile to soldier on.

Anyway, glad you're here, along with the other old-timers that continue to to keep this strange little band of friends alive. Crazy to think we'll be starting our 24th year soon! 

I've been doing this so long that I now occasionally wonder what will become of this site when I die? Laugh I assume it will just go away since the traffic is only a tiny fraction of what it was 20 years ago. Someone will snag the domain name when it becomes available and use it for a few years to forward traffic somewhere else. But it seems a shame that the historical game-by-game content and game videos will likely just disappear. 

Mike DeLancey (from SteelerGridiron.com) sadly passed away in 2015. I considered him a friend and I still regret never meeting him in person during my many trips to Pittsburgh. Life is short, and it's my own fault. That site is gone now, although there's still a dead link on the old Steeler Connection site (which I'm happy to say is still in operation and quite possibly the oldest Steelers fan site still in existence, pre-dating this site by at least a couple of years). 

Anyway, it's been a lot of fun getting to know people like you here over the last 23 years, Dave! Hopefully, we can keep it going for 20 or so more! Thumbsup