Former 49ers running back Roger Craig is one of three finalists for the Edward J. DeBartolo Sr. San Francisco 49ers Hall of Fame. The four-time Pro Bowler recently spoke with 49ers.com to share his thoughts on the nomination.
Q: Where were you when you found about being a finalist in the fan vote for the 49ers Hall of Fame and what was your reaction?
A: Keena Turner called me to let me know and I felt it was a great honor. Anytime you have a player associated with DeBartolo Sr.’s Hall of Fame, it’s a feat in itself. What he brought to the corporate world and him giving the team to his son Eddie and with Eddie creating a dynasty in the 80s, it’s just amazing. I’m humbled by it and it’s a great honor.
Q: What does it mean to be nominated with George Seifert and a versatile player like Gordy Soltau, who did many different things on the football field much like you did?
A: Those guys did a lot of great things for the 49ers. Gordy set the bar for players like me. He was a heck of a player and he was one of the first of his kind. You have to recognize the guys who played before I did. George of course, he’s a genius in his own right. The defenses that we had were a big part of our championships. We wouldn’t have won those championships without a great defense. So George never got the credit he deserves of being a defensive-minded coach, who became a head coach and won two Super Bowls on top of that. It shows you what type of man he was, how he could overcome obstacles and win the big ones. It’s an honor to be mentioned in the same breath as those two guys.
Q: For you personally, what does this nomination mean to you and where does it rank with some of your other notable accomplishments?
A: I’ve never been the type of guy who strides on individual honors; I’m more of a team-player. The honors that have come my way, being selected to the Bay Area Hall of Fame, being on an All-Decade team, being a finalist for the NFL Hall of Fame, I’m grateful for those things for my family and friends. But as far as myself, I don’t really get into all the individual honors. I just embrace the situations when they come.
Q: With the fans being responsible for the voting, what were some of your fondest memories of the 49ers Faithful?
A: We have the best fans on the planet. They’ve always been supportive, through good and through bad. They’re faithful and I feel they deserve to get back in the playoffs, do some damage and win some more Super Bowls. I would love to see that happen very soon, because the fans were cheering us when we played and were a big part of the dynasty. I would love to see that happen again. The 49ers have the tools to make that happen with Jim Harbaugh now as their head coach. He reminds me of Bill Walsh and I think it’s in his DNA to make this happen because of his background. He’s seasoned and knows what it takes to take a team to the next level.
Q: Now that you’ve moved on from a successful playing career to one in the corporate world, can you share with our fans some of the things you’ve been up to recently?
A: I work for TIBCO Software and our motto is, “With the right information at the right time, with the right person or place and the right context, we will make the world a better place.” We’ve been preaching that for the last decade. Our CEO is definitely doing those types of things and he expects it from us in our organization. We’re going to keep striding to be the best everyday and that’s our attitude… It’s just like football.