As promised, Hall of Fame ignores Terrell Owens as it introduces its class Thursday

Per usual, this year’s Pro Football Hall of Fame class was announced to the crowd before the first preseason game of the year.

Before the Bears and Ravens kicked off the Hall of Fame game, NBC play-by-play man Al Michaels introduced the new Hall of Famers over the stadium’s loudspeakers. Brian Urlacher got a big cheer from the Bears fans in Canton, Ohio. Ray Lewis did his squirrel dance. All of the new Hall of Famers smiled as they took the field.

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And, as promised, the Hall of Fame acted as if Terrell Owens didn’t exist.

Why is the Hall of Fame being so petty toward Terrell Owens?

In the weeks before the Hall of Fame induction weekend, maybe the Hall of Fame could have taken the high road with Owens? Owens said he wouldn’t attend, because he was angry after being passed over twice. The Hall of Fame said it would not announce Owens all weekend. The easy thing for the Hall of Fame to do would be to soften its stance and introduce him anyway. He did earn that.

Nope. Owens was not mentioned at all as the Hall of Famers were introduced by Michaels before the game.

“The attending members of the Hall of Fame class,” is how Michaels wrapped it up in his role announcing the members to the crowd in the stands.

While Hall of Fame president David Baker told NFL Network that Owens is welcome in Canton, it’s not like they did much to show that Thursday.

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2018 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductees
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2018 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductees
Feb 3, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; The Pro Football Hall of Fame?s Class of 2018 inductee Bobby Beathard during media availabilities during the NFL Honors show at Cyrus Northrop Memorial Auditorium at the University of Minnesota. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
UNSPECIFIED - CIRCA 1981: Robert Brazile #52 of the Houston Oilers looks on during an NFL football game circa 1981. Brazile played for the Oilers from 1975-84. (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA - OCTOBER 26: Safety Brian Dawkins #20 of the Philadelphia Eagles enters the field during the game against the Atlanta Falcons on October 26, 2008 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Eagles won 27-14. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images)
Green Bay Packers guard Jerry Kramer (64) during Super Bowl I, a 35-10 victory over the Kansas City Chiefs on January 15, 1967, at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Fred Roe/Getty Images) *** Local Caption ***
NEW ORLEANS, LA - FEBRUARY 03: Ray Lewis #52 of the Baltimore Ravens celebrates with the VInce Lombardi trophy after the Ravens won 34-31 against the San Francisco 49ers during Super Bowl XLVII at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome on February 3, 2013 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
FOXBORO, MA - OCTOBER 04: Randy Moss #81 of the New England Patriots looks on against the Baltimore Ravens at Gillette Stadium on October 4, 2009 in Foxboro, Massachusetts. The Patriots defeated the Ravens 27 to 21. (Photo by Rob Tringali/Sportschrome/Getty Images)
ORCHARD PARK, NY - SEPTEMBER 20: Terrell Owens #81 of the Buffalo Bills gets ready to take the field against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Ralph Wilson Stadium on September 20, 2009 in Orchard Park, New York. Buffalo 33-20. (Photo by Rick Stewart/Getty Images)
Chicago Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher (54) smiles before the start of an NFL game against the Indianapolis Colts at Soldier Field in Chicago, Illinois on Sunday, September 9, 2012. The Bears defeated the Colts, 41-21. (Nuccio DiNuzzo/Chicago Tribune/MCT via Getty Images)
Feb 3, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; (From left to right) The Pro Football Hall of Fame?s Class of 2018 including Robert Brazile, Brian Dawkins, Bobby Beathard, Ray Lewis, Randy Moss, and Brian Urlacher during media availabilities during the NFL Honors show at Cyrus Northrop Memorial Auditorium at the University of Minnesota. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - FEBRUARY 03: Robert Brazile, Brian Dawkins and Jerry Kramer selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame at NFL Honors during Super Bowl LII week on February 3, 2018, at Northrop at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, MN. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
MINNEAPOLIS, MN - FEBRUARY 03: Jerry Kramer selected to the Pro Football Hall of Fame at NFL Honors during Super Bowl LII week on February 3, 2018, at Northrop at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, MN. (Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Feb 3, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; (From left to right) The Pro Football Hall of Fame?s Class of 2018 including Bobby Beathard and Ray Lewis during media availabilities during the NFL Honors show at Cyrus Northrop Memorial Auditorium at the University of Minnesota. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Feb 3, 2018; Minneapolis, MN, USA; (From left to right) The Pro Football Hall of Fame?s Class of 2018 including Robert Brazile, Brian Dawkins, and Bobby Beathard during media availabilities during the NFL Honors show at Cyrus Northrop Memorial Auditorium at the University of Minnesota. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
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Owens will be in Chattanooga

Once the broadcast shifted to the NBC booth and Michaels and Cris Collinsworth were speaking to the television audience, Michaels said Owens’ name and promised that he and Collinsworth would discuss him later.

Meanwhile, Owens seemed happy with his choice to have his own ceremony at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. He’ll give a speech there Saturday.

Still, it’s petty that the Hall of Fame is acting like Owens isn’t part of the class just because he won’t attend its party. Owens earned his way on the class with a magnificent career. He finished second all-time in receiving yards. Him deciding to stay away from Canton, for whatever reason, shouldn’t be a reason to not give him any recognition. The Hall could have handled this much better, but it decided not to.

But still, Owens will be a focal point of the weekend, even as the Hall of Fame tries to act like he didn’t earn his way into its ranks.

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Frank Schwabis a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at shutdown.corner@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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