(EDITOR’S NOTE: To access this podcast, please connect to the following link: https://vokalnow.com/audio/1849)
Art Rooney II is more than the owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers. He’s the son of Dan Rooney and the grandson of Art Rooney, both members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame and both architects of one of the most prestigious franchises in the NFL.
Following in their footsteps can’t be easy. So on this Father’s Day, we wondered: What did Art Rooney II learn about running the Steelers from his father … or maybe his grandfather — that he puts to work today?
Rooney was only too happy to answer on this week’s Talk of Fame Network Father’s Day podcast.
“It’s hard to pick one thing out,” he said. “(But) having respect for the game. My Dad and grandfather were both people (where) their attitude toward the game was to stay out of the way and let the coaches coach and the players play … and just try to make sure that you get the best people; surround yourself with the best people you can, and let them do their job.
“Certainly, it’s something that I feel like is an approach I still try to take. I spend a lot of time with our coaches, (like) coach (Mike) Tomlin. But I don’t try to call any plays.
“My grandfather and his approach to life (was) … he was a very down-to-earth person and really loved people and treated people the way he wanted to be treated. And (he believed in) trying to be as good a person as you can. Obviously, he was a very faithful man to his religion, and he certainly tried to pass that along to all of us.”
And his father? Well, as the eldest of Dan Rooney’s nine children, Art II gained shrewd advice from his Dad years ago that he followed … and that, he said, is paying off today for him and the club.
“I enjoyed growing up around the team,” he said. “It’s funny, but as time went on my father used to tell me, ‘Well, all I do is spend time with lawyers. So you better become a lawyer.’ So I took his advice and went to law school and became a lawyer.
“And I actually practiced law in my own firm for about 20 some years before I moved back into the football business. It was really great advice that my Dad gave me because it was great experience for me that I still rely on in terms of the job I have today.”
For more on what Art II learned from his Dad and what it was like growing up Rooney in Pittsburgh in the 1970s when the Steelers won four Super Bowls, please connect to the following link: https://vokalnow.com/audio/1849.