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Steeler #39 jersey on its way

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Fans yearning for Parker jersey

 

By Andrew Johnson

TRIBUNE-REVIEW

Friday, September 16, 2005

 

The Tennessee Titans barely got a hand on Steelers running back Willie Parker's jersey Sunday.

 

Steelers fans have had an equally tough time getting a hold of his No. 39 shirt this week.

 

Only Steelers' official merchandise outlets had the jersey hanging on their racks after his standout performance in the Steelers' opening game.

 

Parker rushed for 161 yards, a Steelers record on opening day, when a guttural chant of "Willie, Willie" overwhelmed the stadium.

 

Retailers seemed unprepared.

 

Dick's Sporting Goods and Hometowne Sports have placed large orders for the No. 39 jersey, but the shirts have yet to arrive. A spokeswoman for Reebok, who makes NFL replica spamshirts, promises that 2,500 Parker spamshirts will be shipped to Pittsburgh stores through the rest of the week.

 

But all Tamara Prince, of the Hill District, could find this week at the Downtown Foot Locker was a Plaxico Burress away Steelers jersey, on sale, for $24.99 (he now plays for the New York Giants).

 

"Maybe they're on eBay," Prince said.

 

She was right. At least eight Parker spamshirts, topping out at $150 apiece, were being auctioned online.

 

Foot Locker saleswoman Teria Pitts, 18, said she had never heard of Parker.

 

"Who knew?" said Ken Augustine, a buyer for Dick's Sporting Goods, about Parker's sudden emergence.

 

He said Parker's start mirrored Ben Roethlisberger's sudden rise last season. Augustine said he hopes the Parker-Roethlisberger analogy keeps up.

 

"We've never had a jersey explode like that," Augustine said about sale of Roethlisberger's No. 7 jersey last year.

 

Hometowne Sports, with stores at Station Square and in West Mifflin, have ordered 300 Parker spamshirts. They might not last long.

 

Station Square saleswoman Krista Walker said 20 fans called in one afternoon this week looking for the jersey.

 

Steelers merchandise manager Tim Carey said the Steelers ordered hundreds of Parker spamshirts a month ago.

 

"If anybody could sell a Willie Parker jersey, it would be us," Carey said.

 

With or without Parker's big game, rabid Steelers ticket-holders would buy, he said.

 

Running backs Jerome Bettis and Duce Staley were sidelined for the opener with injuries, which gave Parker his shot. Parker will start again for the Steelers on Sunday against the Houston Texans.

 

Andrew Johnson can be reached at ajohnson@tribweb.com or 412-380-5632.

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I speak for all of Willie's fantasy owners when I say, I WANT MY #39 WILLIE JERSEY!! I'll temporarily put it on over my throwback John Hannah #73. :D

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Do people still buy spamshirts with #s and names on them anymore? I know in this age of free agency, I wont waste my money on one.

 

I wonder if there were any Jets fans that kept thier L. Coles spamshirts after he left for Washington. :D They got lucky. :D

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Do people still buy spamshirts with #s and names on them anymore?  I know in this age of free agency, I wont waste my money on one.

 

I wonder if there were any Jets fans that kept thier L. Coles spamshirts after he left for Washington. :D  They got lucky. :D

 

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Gotta agree, you can buy them and they move on and suddenly you feel foolish owning the flash in the pan jersey. If you're gonna buy one go with proven vets who aren't moving, like Manning or Harrison, Favre, Bettis, Ricky Willia....(oh, maybe not that one).

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Gotta agree, you can buy them and they move on and suddenly you feel foolish owning the flash in the pan jersey.  If you're gonna buy one go with proven vets who aren't moving, like Manning or Harrison, Favre, Bettis, Ricky Willia....(oh, maybe not that one).

 

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Or buy new ones each spring. I don't do it, but some people do.

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I have a Joe Montana, Joe Namath, Jerry Rice, Brett Farve, Troy Aikman, Howie Long, Charels Woodson, and Pete Rose jersies. All of them have been autographed, so I don't wear them, have them is display cases all around my playroom wall along with helmets from Montana and Favre, and Balls from Montana, Steve Young, Emmitt Smith, Troy Aikman, and one with all the Mannings on it. Come to think of it, I might actually pull the Aikman jersey out of the case and wear it to Monday night's game since he will be inducted into the ring of honor at halftime.

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I speak for all of Willie's fantasy owners when I say, I WANT MY #39 WILLIE JERSEY!! I'll temporarily put it on over my throwback John Hannah #73. :D

 

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I ought to be in line for one as well .. but I have an undying allegiance to my #95 LLoyd Steeeeeeeler jersey. :D

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does anyone want to buy a quentin griffen jersey for cheap?

 

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How about a Travis Prentice? :D

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I actually bought a Jake Plummer Cardinals jersey on eBay once. Brand new with the tags for the whopping price of $3.00 and yes, he was still a Cardinal at the time!

 

:D

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I bought a Brad Johnson jersey before the 98 season. I got like 4 games out of that jersey. Good news is Brad is back in Minnesota, but as a backup. So my jersey is quazi-good now

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I ought to be in line for one as well .. but I have an undying allegiance to my #95 LLoyd Steeeeeeeler jersey.  :D

 

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darn, I thought I was the only one. I have been wearing my "I was not hired for my disposition" Greg Lloyd jersey since 1994. That darn thing cost me $50 worth of beer money when I was on the college budget, and I have stuck with it to this day. That and my Terrible Towel that I bought the same year will not be retired until we win that big game (not the Patriots game next week, but the one in February in Detroit).

 

I was visiting my parents in Pittsburgh last weekend and we went to the Steeler Store (the Mecca for Steeler Fans) in Monroeville Mall. They did have Parker spamshirts, but I am sure they are all gone by now.

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