Daily Archives: September 2, 2008

Happy Birthday, Brad!

September 2 should be a cherished day in the eyes of every card-carrying Pittsburgh Steelers fan; it’s the great Terry Bradshaw’s birthday. The Bayou Bomber was born Septmber 2, 1948, in Shreveport, LA. There is little need for me to recount the man’s wonderful college and professional football accomplishments in this space. This has been done ad nauseam elsewhere. What I would like to remind folks about is that Terry Bradshaw has enjoyed a pretty amazing career in entertainment.

Anyone care to guess how many times he’s appeared on the Tonight Show? Thirty-seven. Thirty-seven appearances hob-nobbing with Johnny Carson or Jay Leno. He recently received a Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. He’s the first (and only) NFL player to manage that. Take a quick trip over to IMDB to check his list of movie and television roles.

Back yet? In addition to his roles in more well-known feature films like Cannonball Run, he also starred in a mercifully brief television action show called The Stockers. I Still remember watching the pilot episode as a 10-year old kid and experiencing what truly bad TV was for the first time. Bradshaw and co-star Mel Tillis played a racing duo bungling their way to the Daytona 500. I looked over at my older brother and probably said something like, “Do you think there will be another episode of Stockers?” Neither of us knew for sure, but my brother did reassure me that he didn’t think Terry was in danger of missing the next Steelers’ training camp due to any conflicts with his acting career.

A quick check of The Encyclopedia of television : series, plots, and specials  (vol. 2) reveals that The Stockers did indeed end with the pilot episode on 4/24/81. This did give Terry time to wrap up his Football career in the ensuing seasons covering 1981 – 1983, and then appear on an episode of one of my favorite 1980’s TV shows, Hardcastle & McCormick in 1985. Obviously Terry has done a lot more distinguished work since those early days. He’s had a long and successful career as an NFL analyst, and done great work in recent films like Failure to Launch and Robots.  

Still, those early days of his entertainment career were just dumb fun, and knowing a little about Terry’s ability to laugh at his own foibles, I think he’d agree. Happy Birthday, Brad!


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