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Thomson's Guy again denied National Football Hall of Fame spot

Ray Guy knows the routine by now, but that doesn't make it any easier on him.

The Pro Football Hall of Fame Board of Selectors met Saturday afternoon for their annual meeting. Once again, they gave Guy their stock answer.


Despite his stellar credentials, the 58-year-old Guy was rejected for the seventh time as a finalist in his bid to become the first pure punter elected into the Hall of Fame. The seven-time Pro Bowler, a member of the NFL 75th anniversary all-time team, Super Bowl silver anniversary team and all-time NFL team, said it's about time Hall of Fame voters recognize punters.

"If that is not a position, don't have it," Guy said in a phone interview Saturday evening. "If it's not important, why in the hell have them? Why spend the time drafting them? Why spend money on them?"

Former Washington Redskins wide receiver Art Monk and cornerback Darrell Green head up the 2008 class to be inducted, Aug. 2. Also voted in were New England linebacker Andre Tippett, San Diego/San Francisco defensive end Fred Dean, Minnesota/Denver tackle Gary Zimmerman and senior committee choice, Kansas City cornerback Emmitt Thomas.

"I can't be as disappointed as Ray is," Guy's former coach at Thomson High School, Paul Leroy, said. "I can't understand why they keep passing him up."

Guy, a member of the National High School Sports Hall of Fame and the College Football Hall of Fame, played 14 seasons for the Oakland and Los Angeles Raiders and won three Super Bowl rings.

Guy popularized the term "hang time" in reference to his sky-high directional punts. He posted a career 42.5 average. Of his 1,049 punts, not one was returned for a touchdown.

Despite the Hall of Fame voters' latest snub, Guy is receiving recognition. Last month, he was named the Walter Camp Football Foundation Alumnus of the Year. In April, he will be inducted into the Bay Area Hall of Fame in San Francisco.

Web posted on Thursday, February 07, 2008

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