Two to be inducted....
March 29. 2005 3:10PM
Saints to induct former player, sports reporter into hall of fame
The Associated Press
He couldn't get onto the plane, but former sports reporter and talk show host Buddy Diliberto made it into the New Orleans Saints Hall of Fame.
Diliberto, who died Jan. 7, covered the Saints from the beginning of the franchise. He so annoyed the original owner of the Saints, John Mecom Jr., that Diliberto was banned from flying on the Saints' plane at a time when most of the media traveled with the team.
Diliberto, who began working for the Times-Picayune in 1950 while a student at Loyola University, also worked in New Orleans television and radio. He became known not only for his strong opinions, but for his malapropos and garbled English.
Diliberto served as the stadium public address announcer during games during the inaugural season.
Also elected to the hall was former Pro Bowl center Joel Hilgenberg, a 10-year veteran with the Saints.
Hilgenberg played his entire NFL career with the Saints from 1984 to 1993. A fourth-round draft choice from Iowa, he played both center and guard for the first five years of his career; center for the rest of his career.
Both men will be inducted into the Saints Hall of Fame this fall.
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