The San Francisco 49ers announced on Wednesday that Jerry Rice will be the next inductee into the Edward J. DeBartolo, Sr. 49ers Hall of Fame. The induction, to be held the weekend of September 18-20, 2010, honors Rice for his outstanding achievements and contributions to the 49ers organization. The 49ers are hosting a red carpet event to officially enshrine Rice into the 49ers Hall of Fame. This exclusive event will take place at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco, CA. Rice will also be recognized during halftime of the Monday night home opener against the Super Bowl Champion New Orleans Saints on September 20, 2010.
"Rice's contributions to the game of football, and to our franchise specifically, have made him one of the best to ever play the game," said 49ers President and CEO, Jed York. "His enshrinement into the Edward J. DeBartolo Sr., Hall of Fame was an obvious choice. He changed the game of football and will always be remembered as one of the best to ever put on a 49ers jersey."
Rice is widely regarded as the greatest wide receiver to ever play the game. The 13-time Pro Bowler holds nearly every NFL career record for wide receivers, including receptions (1,549), receiving yards (22,895) and touchdown receptions (197). Rice played 20 seasons in the NFL, spending his first 16 with the 49ers. While in San Francisco, Rice won three Super Bowl rings (XXIII, XXIV, and XXIX) and was named an All-Pro 10 times.
"It means the world to me to go into the 49ers Hall of Fame and to go in after Mr. DeBartolo and what he meant to the 49ers and the city of San Francisco," said Jerry Rice. "I also give all the credit to all my teammates and the 49ers organization because they took a chance on me way back in the day when they took me as the 16th overall pick in the NFL draft and coming to the city of San Francisco. I feel honored going in after Eddie DeBartolo and because of all the great players I played with, it really represents them and what we were able to accomplish on the field."
The Saturday evening event will begin with a cocktail reception followed by a tribute to Rice featuring family, friends and special guests, the formal induction ceremony and live entertainment. The evening is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to celebrate Rice with members of the 49ers family including, current team Owners Denise and John York, President Jed York, Head Coach Mike Singletary and other 49ers Edward J. DeBartolo, Sr. Hall of Fame members.
The Edward J. DeBartolo, Sr. 49ers Hall of Fame was created in 2009 in honor of the patriarch of one of the most storied franchises in all of professional sports. The Hall of Fame was established to recognize players, coaches and executives who have made exceptional contributions to the organization. Edward J. Debartolo, Jr. was the first inductee into the 49ers Hall of Fame in 2009. Those members of the 49ers family who have had their jersey numbers already retired by the organization or have been selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio, were automatically enshrined in the 49ers Hall of Fame by the organization during the creation in 2009.