Super Bowls, Steelers history with Steel City Star
Steel City Underground presents an exclusive one-on-one interview with the founder of Steel City Star, talking about Pittsburgh Steelers history and memorable Super Bowl moments captured in, often, unreleased film format.
Christina Rivers: I’m happy to sit down with Steel City Star to talk about one of the most unique social media accounts I’ve seen that is related to the Pittsburgh Steelers and National Football League. I know Steelers Nation will really enjoy this. So, how long have you been at it, doing Steel City Star, and what got you started?
Steel City Star: Believe it or not, my earliest Steelers Super Bowl memory is (the) SBXXX loss to Dallas. People probably think otherwise because of my work, but I just happen to have always loved Steelers history as a kid. I always wonder if revealing that is a good or bad thing (the “you didn’t live through it” crowd would have something to say) but I can offer something I’m sure.
Ok… to answer your question… several years ago, actually probably around 2011, I began trading for old Steelers games. There were online forums where people had old broadcast games and someone new to the hobby, like myself, would be able to record Steelers games on TV for those outside the area (and without DirecTV) and use those games to trade with. So, the only money involved was buying blank DVDs. I would trade for a game someone has with a game of mine they want.
After a few years I had a pretty big collection. I made some good connections with older collectors and one of them gave me boxes of old VHS tapes, which I slowly began transferring to digital. It was an absolute gold mine filled with rare, old games and also a lot of local Pittsburgh interviews of Steelers.
In 2017, I started a Twitter account with the intent to share my collection. I didn’t actually start using it until May of 2018, and I also started a newsletter dedicated exclusively to Steelers history called, “The Steel City Star,” because it was formatted in a newspaper style. After a few issues, I began a website and ran that for 3 years. I began doing OTD Steelers post in the fall of 2018 and had about 50 followers then.
CR: How did that hobby progress once you’d begun utilizing your site and social media?
SCS: As my account naturally grew, it gained some attention. NFL Alumni took notice of my site, where I would publish research of old players. They thought I’d be perfect for a two-week freelance gig they needed help on. It was a research project, but they also were looking for a video editor and I happened to have edited videos for my account, so the gig ended up lasting for about 6 weeks. They have since called me back and I have done a couple other things for them.
Also, a producer who worked for CBS reached out to me because of my account and they were looking for help to verify historical Steelers info. So, I did that for what became a full season and also helped them with some interviews.
If I hadn’t begun my Twitter account or my website (which I no longer have up) then none of those opportunities would have come my way. So, my hobby progressed vastly to creating opportunities.
CR: Out of that hobby, you’ve become something of a legend in sports film, on social media especially. Do you have favorite Super Bowl moments among your collection?
SCS: I definitely wouldn’t call myself a legend! However, perhaps the most humbling thing is seeing my account grow and the many complimentary replies I receive. A lot of people refer to me as a Steelers historian, something I think is quite a honor to be called — and people I’ve worked with have stated they reached out to me because they consider me the go-to source for Steelers history in part because I actually share information that many Steelers fans aren’t aware of.
A lot of people are on social media to give opinions, even some very accomplished Steelers historians I know, but not all of them give detailed, factual info. So, I mix my highlight reels with rare footage and new info and it seems to make my account more appreciated than if I were to simply use it to give my opinions.
In regards to my favorite Super Bowl moments in my collection… since the games are available on YouTube, I think my favorite Super Bowl-related stuff would have to be the post-game interviews I’ve shared. All of the local interviews I have from the 1970’s are from old VHS tapes I ended up with. Some of them are actually from the local areas where the respective Super Bowl was played so a lot of Steelers fans may not have seen a particular Jack Lambert interview out of L.A. or the Dwight White interview out of Miami I shared where he happily complains about the champagne in his eyes.
Dwight White after SBXIII
“The champagne’s burning my eyes!” pic.twitter.com/JO7qZRpL4v
— Steel City Star (@steelcitystar) January 22, 2024
SCS: Even national interviews, such as the Today Show interview of Lynn Swann and John Stallworth the morning after SB XIV is stuff that I truly cherish. I actually have a bunch of new VHS tapes of old footage, so I still find new footage I haven’t seen before.
Myron Cope explains the other version of the Terrible Towel curse to John Banaszak
— Steel City Star (@steelcitystar) January 22, 2024
As for other footage, I have some Steelers coaches films from the 1970’s that I sporadically share, some rare footage from the 1950’s, and I have a reel from the 1980’s also. Who knows what I’ll find next.
CR: So, the Terrible Towel curse has some merit to it…
SCS: Yeah, in more ways than one.
CR: As NFL fans prepare for the Super Bowl, they’ll be looking for new memorable moments. Do you have, in your collection, one that you think Steelers fans will always recall or hold onto as a part of team history that will endure long into the future?
SCS: I did a video of the 6 greatest moments in Steelers history… It’s simply a video of each of the six Super Bowl Lombardi Trophy presentations in Steelers history. That might a good one to answer that question with.
The 6 greatest moments in Steelers history pic.twitter.com/xQinH19XYP
— Steel City Star (@steelcitystar) February 9, 2024
CR: Do you find that your clips help keep the Steelers legacy alive for both longtime fans and fans that are younger – a way to keep that history alive?
SCS: I now think so, though I didn’t necessarily think that before. My goal was to be informative while also celebrating the team’s history. Now, my DM’s [on X, formerly Twitter] are filled with people who reach out simply to say how much they love my account.
Funny thing about that is I know social media can be a negative place but my experience has been tremendously positive.
Many of my followers are former Steelers also, but perhaps the absolute best part is that I have a significant amount of followers who are adult children and grandchildren of former Steelers who have passed away and many of them have replied to my posts saying things such as “I’ve never seen this footage before.”
In some cases they will DM a thank you and in one case they said they showed the footage to their family and they were all emotional over it.
Those experiences made me realize that I sort of have a responsibility to use the footage to keep these long forgotten former Steelers alive in memory. So, it goes deeper than just the legacy.
A lot of what I do is a thank you to anyone who has put on the black and gold uniform. It’s definitely what keeps me committed to it.
Also, I’ve been very fortunate because some former players’ children, like Garrett Webster (son of Mike Webster), will actually send me footage. I never asked Garrett for footage, he just straight-up sent me stuff one day. I think it shows how grateful people can be.
The founder of Steel City Star is a part of the Pro Football League of Historians – a new group of NFL historians, one for each of the 32 teams in the league, dedicated to in-depth research and creative endeavors that was started by Patriots Dynasty. You can follow Steel City Star on X @steelcitystar
It was a pleasure to sit down and have a one-on-one. The Steel City Star account truly has some remarkable Steelers footage, including Super Bowl moments, that die-hard fans and young fans alike will truly enjoy.