You’d be hard-pressed to find anyone at any level of football who’s had a better month than Dave Dickenson.
It started on Nov. 25 when Dickenson coached the Calgary Stampeders to a Grey Cup championship. It was the third consecutive season he took his Stampeders to the Canadian Football League title game but the first time he was able to hoist the trophy.
Then on Dec. 4, Dickenson was in New York City for his induction into the College Football Hall of Fame. He was joined in the Class of 2018 by the likes of Ed Reed, Calvin Johnson and Charles Woodson, among others. Dickenson was a former quarterback at the University of Montana.
Dickenson stopped by the Talk of Fame Network to visit with hosts Ron Borges, Rick Gosselin and Clark Judge on this week’s show about those major events in his life. Former NFL referee Ed Hochuli and NFL Network historian Elliot Harrison also were guests on the show.
Dickenson is already in the CFL Hall of Fame as a player, having been both a league MVP and Grey Cup MVP. He has been the head coach of the Stampeders only three seasons but took them to the championship game every year. Finally winning the title was quite an honor – but not the high point of his last month.
“I’m pumped to win the Grey Cup as a coach,” Dickenson said. “It was fun and it felt like it was really overdue, losing my first two years, then getting back there and wondering if I was going to be like the coach of the Buffalo Bills and just have a bunch of losses in the big game.
“But the College Football Hall of Fame to me was just so special. It’s just unbelievable. I’m still in awe. I feel like it’s not real. I’m not sure there’s a higher honor for myself than that College Football Hall of Fame, especially from where I came from…Montana. Not even thinking it was possible to be honest with you with all these great players out there. Knowing we’re a small school and understanding the limitations that we had.”
Dickenson won the Walter Payton Award at Montana in 1995. That’s the NCAA Division I-AA equivalent to the Heisman Trophy. He passed for 5,676 yards in leading Montana to the I-AA championship that season and still holds NCAA records for career completion percentage (68.7) and lowest career interception percentage (only 26 in 1,477 attempts). His number 15 was retired by the school and in 2013 he was named the top male athlete in the history of the Big Sky Conference.
From there Dickenson played in the CFL 10 seasons with Calgary and British Columbia, winning MVP honors in 2000 and Grey Cup MVP honors in 2006. He posted career bests of 5,496 yards and 36 touchdowns in 2003. Dickenson was elected to the CFL Hall of Fame in 2015.
Hochuli retired from the NFL after the 2017 season but took time out from his RV travels to visit with the Talk of Fame Network about his latest honor – election to the bobblehead Hall of Fame. His bobblehead also features moving arms and can be purchased at www.bobbleheadhall.com, with the proceeds going to Hochuli’s two favorite charities, Autism Speaks and the Tyler James Riveron Foundation.
““If you want to have something to throw rocks at, it would be the Ed Hochuli bobblehead,” Hochuli said.
Hochuli has a son (Shawn) who is in his first NFL season as a referee and now serves as an NFL rules consultant.
“I got dragged back in,” Hochuli mused.
Harrison weighed in on the slate of 25 semifinalists for the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s Class of 2019. He also gave us his opinion on the best player not in Canton – Dallas outside linebacker Chuck Howley.
“The guy played forever,” Harrison said. “He played until he was 37 years old. He was the MVP of a Super Bowl despite his team not winning. He has a Super Bowl ring and had four takeaways in his two Super Bowls. He was great in coverage, a good tackler and never did anything to harm his team. He was just a great solid player in the National Football League.”
Ron Borges also addressed the NFL’s need to protect kickers, Rick Gosselin stated the Hall-of-Fame case of former Bears' safety and Redskins' coach Richie Petitbon, and the hosts also discussed in depth the four linebackers among the 25 Hall-of-Fame semifinalists. There were a few Secret Santa suggestions as well.
To hear the show, just click on and start listening.