Stomper Bulluck a marked man in eyes of Steeler fans
Posted: Monday, June 22, 2009 6:28 pm
By: By TERESA M. WALKER, AP Sports Writer
NASHVILLE (AP) — Keith Bulluck tried not to pull out the gift sent to him back in February. The Tennessee linebacker couldn’t wait any longer to share when asked if he felt like a marked man when the Titans visit Pittsburgh to open the 2009 season.
He started to answer, then turned around to his locker and pulled out a Terrible Towel from the Steelers’ Super Bowl with a note sent to him dated Feb. 16. The note read: “On behalf of Steelers Nation, we would like to present you with our new Terrible Towel. Hang this up in your locker room. Sincerely, the Black and Gold P.S.: I hope you enjoyed the Super Bowl.”
Bulluck was among the Titans who stomped on yellow towels after a 31-14 win over Pittsburgh in Nashville last Dec. 21.
“So you tell me if I’m on their mind,” Bulluck said Friday after a Titans minicamp session. “Look at the date. It’s like a week and a half after they won the Super Bowl. So you tell me if I’m a marked man. You know what? I can’t wait until we go to Pittsburgh.”
The Titans open the 2009 season at Pittsburgh on Sept. 10 in a Thursday night game. Bulluck isn’t planning on a reverse stomp at that game.
“In all due respect, after we win, I definitely will not be stomping on any towels. That’s just utter disrespect. The only reason why it happened was because they came into our house waving their 15,000 towels or whatever, and they travel well. They’re a proud organization. Steeler Nation they are, but we’re not too worried about it.”
Bulluck called it part of the game with some Steelers fan having fun with him. And yes, he’s looking forward to the opener.
“It is a little extra motivation, not that I really needed it,” he said.
LenDale White also swiped his foot across a towel after the December win, but he hasn’t been sent any similar gifts himself. He isn’t apologetic about stomping a towel either even though the Terrible Towel is revered by Steelers’ fans.
“They came into the Titans arena waving those ugly yellow flags, and I stomped on one,” White said. “If they wave it again, I’m going to stomp on another one. I’m the Terrible Towel Stomper forever. If people don’t like it on this team or anywhere else, whatever. I don’t think a towel stomp makes you play more hard or less hard.”
Now if anyone does want to send something, White, who is proudly weighing in at a svelte 234 pounds, has a suggestion.
“I’ve seen the Big Ben Roethlisberger sandwich on TV, so if anybody wants to freeze and send one over, I’ll be more than happy to eat it,” White said of the sandwich named for Pittsburgh’s quarterback.
A FEW MORE REPS: Kerry Collins is a 14-year NFL veteran who has played in a Super Bowl and in the Pro Bowl and the bright lights of prime-time. Helping present an award at the Country Music Television awards on June 16? That was a bit stressful.
“I didn’t want to mess my lines up,” Collins said. “I knew the teleprompter was going to be there, but we didn’t rehearse a whole lot. That was my first time doing anything like that. I was fine until the point I had to go out there. Then I said, ‘I’m going to find that teleprompter and make sure I don’t miss anything.”
Collins is a songwriter himself, having co-written approximately 20 songs over the past couple years. He called it a real thrill to be around the awards show. He also got to talk to stars like Alan Jackson, Jamey Johnson and Dierks Bentley.
When he talked with Jackson, the conversation included how Collins listened to the singer’s “Good Time” CD a lot last year. The superstitious Collins had the CD playing when the Titans started the season winning, so he couldn’t switch until the team lost.
“I told him about basically from September through November I played his CD in my truck, and it was a big part of my year. He said he had heard about it and congratulated me on a good year,” Collins said.
SHOW OFF THAT RING: Nate Washington has been busy over the past month helping celebrate the Super Bowl ring he won with the Pittsburgh Steelers. There was that trip to the White House to meet President Barack Obama. He also recently collected that ring in a ceremony in Pittsburgh.
Washington said his visit to the White House was exciting because it was his second trip there. He called it exciting to meet the president.
“He’s a very down to earth type of guy, and I’m just glad that he’s taking everything in just as well as everyone else takes it in. He’s a great guy to meet,” Washington said.
And what about that ring? Well, Washington said he left it at home because he wasn’t sure how his new teammates would react.
“I’ll be bringing it in to show everybody. I can’t wait. … I’ll bring it in so the guys can see it,” Washington said.
EXTRA POINTS: The Titans hit the golf course today for the team’s annual tournament to raise money for the Titans Foundation charity. … Defensive end Jevon Kearse spent the past week working by himself during the team’s two open organized team activities. There’s a chance he rejoins the Titans for some drills starting Tuesday for the first of three final sessions wrapping up the offseason.