On Friday, the members of the newly-formed senior selection committee decided to bestow upon former Patriots center Jon Morris the fans had not chosen him for: induction into the team’s Hall of Fame.
Morris, the center on the Pats’ 50th anniversary team and a six-time AFL all-star during his 11-year career in New England (he also made the Pro Bowl in 1970), had been one of three finalists for fan voting into the Hall in each of the previous three years, but had lost out to Jim Nance, Sam “Bam” Cunningham and Ben Coates.
And with a slew of more recent stars becoming eligible for induction over the next few years – Drew Bledsoe is a shoo-in this year, Troy Brown comes up next year, and Tedy Bruschi, Rodney Harrison and Willie McGinest are eligible in 2013 – it seemed even less likely that Morris would get his due.
So the team created the 10-member senior selection committee to evaluate cases like his; the committee will meet every five years to discuss players who have been retired for at least 25 years and have previously been finalists for the fan voting.
The three finalists for this year’s fan vote to determine the player who will join Morris during this year’s enshrinement ceremony will be announced on April 15.