Raiders owner Mark Davis, other National Football League reaction on passing of Dan Rooney

Rachel Hardy
April 15, 2017

Rooney also served as USA ambassador to Ireland from 2009 to 2012.

It's not a stretch to suggest Vance Joseph is the Denver Broncos' head coach because of Dan Rooney. While the NFL nearly had 65 percent of its athletes being Black, only six percent of the league had minority representation as head coaches. Then in the end of the 2002 season, Tony Dungy and Dennis Green were fired after having tremendous success as head coaches.

Why Rooney? As so many of his players said through the years, he saw no color, only talent.

But getting back to Noll, Rooney helped build the most powerful dynasty of the 1970s and, at the time, all time. The NFL established the rule in 2003. It says teams have to interview at least one minority candidate when hiring a new head coach or general manager. "Few men have contributed as much to the National Footbal".

Gov. Tom Wolf on Friday ordered the Commonwealth flag to be flown at half-staff across Pennsylvania to honor Rooney, who died Thursday at 84. He was the US Ambassador to Ireland and once held court with the Pope.

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Rooney is also well remembered at St. Vincent College in Latrobe, a Benedictine-run school that has been the training camp of the Steelers for 51 years.

"My job is to do what's best for the organization and to make that decision regardless of what the consequences are to me personally", Dan Rooney once said.

Perhaps chief among the former Steelers owner's contributions was his advocacy for minorities in regards to executive and coaching positions. The Steelers most recently won it all in 2009.

Washington Cardinal Donald W. Wuerl, former bishop of Pittsburgh, described Rooney as a "champion for his family, his community, his team and his faith".

Other reports by TheDailyFarc

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