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Pittsburgh Steelers legend Franco Harris dies at age 72

The Hall of Fame running back passes away just days before celebrating the 50th anniversary of his Immaculate Reception

Steelers Franco Harris

Just days before the Pittsburgh Steelers and Las Vegas Raiders will meet in Pittsburgh for the 50th anniversary of the legendary Immaculate Reception, the man who completed the legendary play, Franco Harris, has passed away. He was 72 years old.

For fans of the Pittsburgh Steelers, they know plenty about Harris and what he brought to the Steelers’ organization, not just during his playing days. He was a steward for the team, the city and the game of football. On Saturday night, the Steelers are preparing to retire his No. 32 jersey, something which will carry a different significance now after his passing.

Harris ran for 12,120 yards and won four Super Bowl rings with the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 1970s, a dynasty that began when Harris decided to keep running during a last-second heave by Steelers quarterback Terry Bradshaw in a playoff game against Oakland in 1972.

The play dubbed the Immaculate Reception is often considered the most iconic play in NFL history.

Some of the many accolades in Harris’ career were:

  • 4x Super Bowl Champion
  • Super Bowl MVP
  • NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year 1972
  • NFL Man of the Year 1976
  • 1st Team All-Pro 1977
  • NFL All-Decade Team (1970s)
  • Steelers Hall of Honor
  • Pro Football Hall of Fame
  • No. 32 retired for the Steelers organization

At the time of this article being written, the cause of death was not released. We here at BTSC, along with all Steelers fans everywhere, send our thoughts and prayers to not just the Harris family, but to all those grieving the death of a beloved figure in Pittsburgh Steelers history.

For Steelers fans, feel free to use the comment section below to give your condolences, tell stories and talk about the man who meant so much to the city of Pittsburgh, and the Steelers.