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Saturday, August 7, 2010
Emmitt Smith closes the speeches

By Matt Mosley

I always enjoy the Hall of Fame induction ceremony, but this one seemed especially good. I didn't envy Emmitt Smith following Floyd Little's sermon, but the Cowboys' great nailed it.

I think the classiest thing you can do is recognize your high school coaches and Smith didn't take long to name his head coach and offensive coordinator.

Now this is just me, but I would've preferred Jerry Jones introducing Smith with a live speech. The video was well done, but Jones is far more entertaining in person.

The Triplets are all in the Hall now, and I thought it was a great touch to have Troy Aikman and Michael Irvin stand during that portion of the speech. Irvin's the one who taught Smith how to work in the weight room and that was cool to see him acknowledge that.

The Darryl Johnston moment was superb. Smith said Johnston protected him as if he were his "little brother." Smith was really torn between Jones and Johnston to serve as presenter.

"Without you, I know today would not have been possible," said Smith of Johnston.

It was also a great decision to name all those offensive linemen. I'm sure Baylor's Kelvin Garmon didn't expect a mention, but he'll take it anyway.

Smith's father, Emmitt James, Jr., was a huge influence and it was neat to hear the Cowboys running back mention his father's athletic career. Sharing the story about the two of them before a Super Bowl was a powerful moment.

This is one of those rare times when Redskins and Cowboys fans can rejoice together. Russ Grimm and Emmitt Smith are two of the greatest players from their respective decades. And they played for two of the greatest fan bases in sports.