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Here’s why T.O. is holding his own Hall of Fame ceremony

T.O. will celebrate his induction into the NFL Hall of Fame Saturday afternoon at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

In typical Terrell Owens fashion, he’s going against the norms that the NFL has established.

Owens was finally elected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame after a couple years of being rejected by the voters. Owens is reversing their actions onto them by refusing to attend the Hall of Fame ceremony in Canton, Ohio, and hosting his own ceremony at his alma mater, the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

Why is Terrell Owens holding his own ceremony?

ESPN’s Vaughn McClure had a chance to catch up with Terrell Owens ahead of his personal ceremony and Owens gave a lengthy response as to why he’s made the decision to do this.

“I understand why I made my decision. I don’t expect everyone to agree with me. But again, obviously the criteria and the system put in place for the Hall of Fame in order for guys like myself to be inducted, there are guidelines that the writers, the sportswriters, are supposed to adhere to. It’s not, not being inducted the first or second ballot, but it’s about the process in which guys are nominated and ultimately inducted. There’s a flaw in that system. So this is not only about me, but it’s about the guys that went before me, that’s going to come after me. And I can make a stand for those guys so they won’t have to go through this situation.’’

Why was Owens snubbed before?

Despite being second all-time in receiving yards, third in touchdown receptions, and eighth in catches, Owens was snubbed twice by the Hall of Fame voters. Owens’ on-field behavior rubbed a lot of people the wrong way (and resulted in him playing for five different teams over his career), but his antics were ultimately harmless.

It was puzzling to see one of the most dominant offensive players to ever step on a football field struggle to get in the Hall of Fame, because everyone knew he was a slam dunk, first-ballot pick based on his play.

What’s the Hall of Fame’s reaction?

Hall of Fame executive director Joe Horrigan was pretty straightforward with his feelings on the matter.

“There’s no reason to bring him up as an individual,” said Horrigan. “He’s not here.”

Owens won’t be individually honored at the ceremony since he’s not there, but he was featured in the highlights during the Hall of Fame Game on Thursday and he is on the program for the weekend. Owens will be representing the Eagles on the official Hall of Fame program.

What time does his ceremony start?

Owens’ ceremony will begin precisely at 3:17 p.m. ET on Saturday.

The entire ceremony is not expected to be televised, though NFL Network will cover part of it according to a statement from NFL Media:

“NFL Network plans to run an excerpt of Terrell Owens’ speech at the University of Tennessee Chattanooga during our coverage on Saturday.”

As of now, The University of Tennessee-Chattanooga has no plans to live stream the ceremony.

We’ll update accordingly if the school does decide to live stream the event.

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