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Jamie De Giorgio
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Jamie De Giorgio

The lead writer and editor at Total Pro Sports

Experts Know Best

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Should the public have a say in the Pro Football Hall of Fame's selection process? To answer this question, we need not look further than All-Star balloting in some of North America's top professional leagues. We have seen what happens when we leave it to the fans to decide. Let's be serious for a second here. Do we really need to see similar mistakes in HOF voting as we did when we were presented with the likes of Josh Hamilton as a starter for the American League at the MLB's 2009 Summer Classic ? Or how about giving Mike Komisarek a spot in the starting line up for the Eastern Conference at this year's NHL All-Star Game?

It is enough of a problem to present "fan favorites" with all-star nominations simply based on the fact that they play in markets where there is increased exposure and a larger voting population. Let's not pollute Canton with similar undeserving candidates. And besides, who better to decide than the experts whose job it is to watch and analyze the game of football.

Now don't get me wrong here. I am not against the fans. I am a fan, and I would go so far as to say that many fans would likely offer better judgment into the Hall of Fame selection process than the 44 current selectors. It is not the hardcore, knowledgeable fan that poses a problem here. It is the many others with a lack of knowledge towards the subject that would be given the right to vote if it were open to the public. They are the ones whom I fear most.

The Hall of Fame, no matter what sport it is representing, is a sanctuary where the careers of the greatest players who have played the game go to rest among each other, to be remembered for generations to come. It is not a popularity vote, or something meant to honor a particular flavor of the month. The selection committee has a job. They do their homework, perform background checks, sort through the numbers, and determine who is worthy of enshrinement. The process is characterized by a strict set of guidelines that ensures only the best can enter the gates of sporting heaven. The selection process may have its problems at times, but opening it to the public is not the answer.

We may live in a democratic society, but that doesn't mean the Pro Football Hall of Fame should follow suit. When it comes to Canton and the HOF selection process, an aristocracy works just fine, if you ask me.

By Jamie De Giorgio  |  August 8, 2009; 10:54 AM ET  | Category:  Fans , NFL , Roger Goodell Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati  
Previous: No Room in Canton for Sanjaya | Next: Fans Don't Deserve Vote

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So De Giorgio compares fans voting for a Hall of Fame inductee to the All-Star games in baseball and hockey?

How about a change in the rules of NFL HoF, that instead of a minimum of four to a maximum of seven number of inductees per year, that Akron follow the Baseball Hall of Fame rules - inductees must be named on a certain number of ballots, whether that results in zero or ten inductees? And how about another rule change - instead of 'old-timers' (those who played before a certain date, currently 1985) be selected on a separate ballot, not mixed in with the 'non-old timers'?

Baseball doesn't allow fans to vote for the Hall of Fame, so why is De Giorgio comparing the fans' votes for the NFL HoF to baseball's and hockey's All-Star games? Compare apples to oranges much, De Giorgio?

Posted by: critter69 | August 9, 2009 1:02 AM

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