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Harrison, Nolan

Card: GameDay 1992
Acquired: In Person, Dallas Cowboys Training Camp 1993

Indiana University is not really known as a hotbed of football talent- but the Raiders took a chance on Nolan Harrison in the 6th round of the 1991 draft as a possible replacement for star defensive end Howie Long or Greg Townsend. In the meantime the Raiders would utilize him also at defensive tackle, until 1994 when he’d get a career high 5 sacks at left defensive end. Nolan would sign with the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1997, and play there through 1999 making 7.5 sacks and then close out his career with the Washington Redskins in 2000. As a player, Nolan’s strength would be his high motor and flexibility along the defensive line providing invaluable depth for 10 seasons.

Since retiring Harrison has remained extremely active in NFLPA activities, serving on a variety of boards, financial management, and being a motivational speaker. In 2010, Nolan was named Senior Director of Former Player Affairs and he and former Raider Dave Pear have also squared off on disability and retirement benefits over the last few months.

On top of the possible 2011 NFL strike, there’s actually another party involved in the labor dispute that must not be ignored- those retired players that paved the way for the rest of the league’s success. Many former players who did not live on the ballooned million dollar contracts and on a pittance of severance sacrificed their bodies for our entertainment and now their pain and problems are largely ignored by the league. While Nolan has made some contact with Dave Pear- it remains to be seen whether or not our former greats are treated with the respect they deserve.  You can follow Nolan on twitter at: http://twitter.com/NolanHarrison74.

G/Gs  128/83      Tac 199      Sac 22.0     Fum 5      Int 0     Yds 0     Avg  -.-      Td 0      Lg 0

Cornish IV, Frank (1968-2008)

Card: ProSet 1990
Acquired: In Person 1992, Dallas Cowboys training camp

Following an outstanding career at UCLA, the Chargers in the 1990 draft took Frank Cornish in the 6th round. A well rounded blocker and great locker room presence, Cornish would play with the Chargers through the 1991 season, before being traded to the Dallas Cowboys in 1992. I had literally heard he was traded and remembered that I had a card of him and just stuffed it into my assortment. From what I remember he was there the next day. Cornish would then block for Cowboys runningback Emmitt Smith over the next season or two providing valuable depth for two seasons earning rings in SuperBowl XXVII and XXVIII. Frank would then head over to the Minnesota Vikings for 7 games after being relased in 1994 and then would then sign with the Jacksonville Jaguars during their innaugural season and play in 3 games in 1995, -finally finishing with the Eagles in 2 final games in 1996 before retiring. He’d appear in a grand total of 69 regular season games.

In his post NFL career Cornish had become a stockbroker working for Wachovia Securities in Southlake, Tx and was involved in numerous charities. Frank had some financial issues after his playing career ended, but still managed to persevere through it all.  Sadly and suddenly on August 22 of 2008, Frank passed away in his sleep of heart disease at the age of 40. He is survived by his wife and 5 children and the city dedicated a park to his honor at Town Square.

Walsh, Steve

Card: Score 1990
Acquired: In Person 1990, Dallas Cowboys Training Camp

When Troy Aikman was selected by the Dallas Cowboys with the overall #1 pick in 1989, it didn’t take them long to make waves by grabbing Steve Walsh with their supplemental #1 pick soon thereafter, as Walsh was Dallas’ head coach Jimmy Johnson‘s quarterback at Miami. Walsh and Aikman duked it out for much of the season with Walsh (,not Aikman,) winning the lone game for the team that year- a snoozer against the Washington Redskins. The victory however didn’t figure into the team’s decision to keep him, and Walsh ended up being traded for a few draft choices to the New Orleans Saints after training camp in 1990.  The Saints, were looking to play hardball with encumbent quarterback Bobby Herbert. As Herbert returned to the lineup, Walsh saw his time decrease, but Walsh ended up having the his best season of his career there playing for the Saints a year later in 1991, starting 7 games and throwing for 11 touchdowns to 6 interceptions. After a forgettable 1992 and 1993 though, Walsh was sent packing and signed with the Chicago Bears where he was reuntied with an old familiar coach- Dave Wannastedt, the former defensive coordinator of the Dallas Cowboys. He’d take over as backup quarterback under Erik Kramer (who happened to be replacing Jim Harbaugh). Kramer would be injured and Walsh would run the show, under a well-managed, albeit conservative game plan, helping shepherd the Bears into the playoffs with a 9-7 record. He’d throw for 2,000+ yards and 10 touchdowns starting 11 games that season for the Bears, but with the 1994 season out of the way, he inexplicably would not start another game in Chicago or throw for anymore touchdowns in his career. After a forgettable 1996 with the Rams, Walsh played 1997 and 1998 with the Buccaneers throwing 4 more picks, before closing out his career with the Colts in 1999 with 2 more and retire. Since football, Walsh has gotten involved at the high school level and coaches football in Florida.

G/Gs  80/38     Att 1317    Comp 713   Yds 7875   Pct 54.1%   Td 40   Int  50  Rat  66.4