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Wally Burnham “awed” by trip to Pro Football Hall


AMES — It takes a lot to leave Iowa State’s veteran defensive coordinator Wally Burnham awestruck.

This weekend’s trip to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio, did just that, though.

“Never been there,” said Burnham, who was invited to the 2014 induction ceremony by recent inductee Derrick Brooks, whom he coached at Florida State. “You’re in awe, really. I’m 72-years-old and there’s guys up there that I’ve followed my whole life. You’ve got people like Forrest Gregg sitting up there. You’ve got people like Derrick up there with those guys. It’s just a great atmosphere. The thing that caught my eye is a lot of them get around worse than I do. They’ve had some bangs and hits in their lives.”

Burnham said he didn’t have “anything to do” with Brooks’ journey from Tallahassee to NFL great.

Brooks disagreed, naming him — and many others — during his all-inclusive induction speech.

“I thought he did a great job with that acceptance speech,” Burnham said. “It was just a big honor to be there. I was humbled by it, really.”


Rob Gray


Rob, an Ames native, joined Cyclone Fanatic in August, 2014 after nearly a decade and a half of working at Iowa's two largest newspapers. He spent 10 years at the Des Moines Register and, after a brief stint in public relations, joined the Cedar Rapids Gazette as an Iowa State correspondent three years ago. Rob specializes in feature stories for CF.