If you’ve been a Buccaneers fan for any amount of time, you’ve certainly seen Keith Kunzig—more commonly referred to as “Big Nasty”—around.
Whether it’s been inside Raymond James Stadium, at a tailgate or at a community event, you’ve seen the iconic face paint, horned helmet and Super Bowl championship belt that Kunzig dons to show his support for the Bucs. The man has been an icon in the Tampa Bay community for decades.
And on Friday, he got another honor to add to his résumé. In Miami for the Super Bowl as a 2020 Ford Hall of Fans finalist, Big Nasty was on the receiving end of one of those famous knocks from David Baker, the president of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Thanks to votes from his fellow fans around the country and world, he is once again Canton-bound as a member of the Ford Hall of Fans Class of 2020. This was, of course, Kunzig’s second knock. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame back in 2001.
Kunzig is joined by Kansas City Chiefs fan Janel R. Carbajo (a.k.a. “The Puppet Lady”) and Denver Broncos fan Rob Garner (a.k.a. “Rescue Rob) in the 2020 class. All three will be inducted during the Hall of Fame Weekend in Canton, Ohio, later this year.
To be included on the ballot in the first place, these fans had to be nominated by legends of their respective teams. Kunzig was nominated by Hall of Famer Derrick Brooks, who delivered the nomination news in person back in December.
Kunzig doesn’t just display his Buccaneer pride at games on Sundays—he also does so in the community through a variety of initiatives that he started many years ago. He has a “Drugs Are Nasty” program, hosts “Nasty for a Day” tailgates at home games to raise money to fight drug abuse and makes regular hospital visits to Johns Hopkins All-Children’s Hospital.
I think we can all agree that Kunzig using his “Big Nasty” persona to not only celebrate his team but also make a difference in the Tampa Bay community is admirable and certainly worthy of the recognition he has gotten over the years.
So, on behalf of everyone here at Bucs Nation, we send our sincerest congratulations to you, Big Nasty. You deserve it.
Be sure to send Kunzig your own congratulations on Twitter @BigBucNasty!