It was just a month ago when Pittsburgh Steelers legend Terry Bradshaw said he thought we’ll see NFL football played this season. And on Monday, my colleague Alex Parker wrote about the National Football League meeting to discuss new proposals which might reward teams for hiring and retaining minority coaches and management staffers.
But today’s top NFL headline is a bit different. Someone from the Pittsburgh NBC affiliate had the same reaction I did, when I learned Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf had a problem with, of all people, current Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger:
I mean 🤷🏻♀️ — Gov. Wolf concerned over Ben Roethlisberger’s beard trimming https://t.co/Pu5vf37fBM
— Melanie Gillespie (@WPXIMelanie) May 20, 2020
As our sister site Twitchy shared, Wolf wasn’t all that happy to learn that a “yellow zone” barbershop agreed to give the player a much-needed beard trim. Apparently, Roethlisberger had made a deal with himself: he could clean things up, once post-injury practices yielded a pro-level pass.
I admittedly do not listen to every press conference with Governor Tom Wolf. I'm going through today's presser, and this comes up:
Gov. Wolf on Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger getting his hair cut and beard trimmed at an Allegheny County barbershop: pic.twitter.com/NZJR4PoIQk
— Josh Kurelac (@JoshKurelac) May 19, 2020
Sports site DK Pittsburgh Sports.com described how it went down, writing in part, “….[Roethlisberger] shared a video on Twitter on Monday showing some of his throws to JuJu Smith-Schuster, James Conner and Ryan Switzer, followed by a shot of his beard getting trimmed at a barber shop.”
Roethlisberger was at Norman’s Cut N Edge Barbershop in Sewickley. Allegheny County is in the “yellow phase” of lifting restrictions that were set in place to limit the spread of the coronavirus. Under the yellow phase, retail stores are allowed to reopen, but places like barbershops and salons are not yet permitted to reopen.
Now, the barbershop owner is pushing back, writing in a letter released Tuesday night that it was just a favor for a friend — no money changed hands.
The letter read, in part:
Carlos Norman has been a community fixture and local business owner since 1993. Norman’s Cuttin’ Edge Barber Shop has been closed for business since the governor’s shut-down order, and presently remains closed, in full compliance with the law and state regulations. Mr. Norman and Mr. Roethlisberger are close personal friends, and Mr. Norman’s use of his free time during closure to provide a haircut to his friend is a personal favor where no money was received or exchanged. In most homes across the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and the rest of America, we are relying on the selfless acts of friends and family members to get us through the ongoing pandemic.
It’s surprising that Gov. Wolf had time to bother with the Steeler QB’s grooming needs. WPXI reported that, on Tuesday, he was busy wresting control from counties hoping to, you know, make their own rules about which businesses can start re-opening, by vetoing three bills. They also shared an eye-opening stat about the county where the barbership is: “Nearly 78% of all COVID-19 deaths in Allegheny Co. are in long-term care facilities.”
What do you think? Leave your thoughts in the comment area below!