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Hitting Both Ends of the Vikings' Spectrum

I really will get into an off-season review at some point here, I promise.  My next couple of weeks are going to be a bit busy. . .Mother Gonzo is journeying down here from the Great White North to visit Mrs. Gonzo and I for a week, and then after that I have to, as the kidz today might say, study like a mofo for my E-6 promotion test.  I came close to making it last year, and hopefully this time I'll get over the top.

But anyway, there are two stories out there concerning former members of the Beloved Purple.  We'll start with the good news first.

Former Vikings receiver Cris Carter, in his first year of eligibility, is among 17 finalists who will be considered for election to the Pro Football Hall of Fame when the Hall's board of selectors meet a day before the Super Bowl on Feb. 2 in Arizona.

The list of finalists was announced Tuesday and includes former Vikings guard Randall McDaniel and tackle Gary Zimmerman.

Zimmerman previously has been a finalist but this is a first for McDaniel, who became eligible last year. To gain entry into the Hall a finalist must receive a minimum positive vote of 80 percent.

I still say Carter ought to be a no-brainer.  Of course, I'm incredibly biased.

And now, unfortunately, the bad news:

Search Ministries will hold a tribute this week for former Vikings LB Wally Hilgenberg, who has been diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis - a terminal illness more commonly known as Lou Gehrig's disease. Hilgenberg is scheduled to speak at the event, set for Thursday morning at the Sheraton Bloomington hotel.

Hilgenberg played for Minnesota from 1968-1979, which puts him a bit before my Vikings' fandom, but I've heard a lot of good things about the kind of player he was.  If any of our elder statesmen can enlighten us further, feel free to leave any memories you might have of Wally in the comments section.

Also, here is a link for Search Ministries, the group that's organizing Mr. Hilgenberg's speaking event that's mentioned above.

You'll recall that another former Viking. . .safety Orlando Thomas. . .also suffers from ALS.  If you have a MySpace page, here is a link to Thomas' page.

And, on that note, we'll see you again soon.  Have a good rest of your evening, folks.