Ralph Wilson, Jr. has chosen ESPN's Chris Berman as his presenter for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Ceremony on August 8th, the Bills owner announced. Wilson was selected as a 2009 Enshrinee by the Hall of Fame Selection Committee on January 31st of this year, one day before Super Bowl XLIII , at the committee's election meeting, for his outstanding contributions to the game of professional football.
Wilson commented on his choice of Berman as his presenter by saying, "Chris has been a friend of mine for many years and I thought he would be a great person to introduce me, if he would do so. He acknowledged that he would and I thank him very much and he will be in Canton with me. Chris really embodies the Bills fans, who have played such an important role in my career in professional football. Professional football is all about the fans and having Chris as my presenter follows that thought."
Berman, a thirty-year veteran of ESPN, has been named National Sportscaster of the Year six times and has won numerous additional prestigious broadcasting awards. The 2009 season will mark his 24th consecutive as studio host of Sunday NFL Countdown. He has emceed the Hall of Fame Induction ceremonies the past 10 years, but this will be the first time he has served as a presenter. Berman also becomes just the ninth member of the media to serve in a presenter's role.
"Fifty years in sports, there's only one constant - Ralph Wilson is the owner of the Buffalo Bills. What Mr. Wilson has done for pro football and for the city of Buffalo and Western New York, it's hard to put into words," said Berman. "He remains in it for the same reasons he got into it in 1959 - he loves the game of football, and that's apparent in everything he does. It will be an honor to have a bird's eye view to watch him be inducted in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, especially this year, in the 50th year of the old American Football League. He's a man I admire very much and I'm honored to just be there."