My Elite Network: Why did you choose to attend the University of Arkansas?
Steve Korte: My first love was ice hockey. Back then you could visit five schools for official visits. Of course, I visited Colorado and Wyoming. When I went to Arkansas, which was my last visit, it really felt like a place I would fit in. It was a great move. The decision to go to Arkansas worked out really well for me.
My Elite Network: What was it like having Lou Holtz as your coach?
Steve Korte: Lou Holtz was tough. Everything was extremely hard and was a lesson. He had a knack for developing young athletes. He was kind of a psychologist, as well as the head football coach. He was driven and I think he really enjoyed teaching football players to be better players.
My Elite Network: Do you remember being drafted by the New Orleans Saints?
Steve Korte: Back then it was crazy. Teams were flying me all over the United States to work out, it got to be somewhat cumbersome with trying to keep my grades up. I only had a few hours left to get my degree and I knew I was really going to screw up my GPA if I didn’t do something. So, I dropped out of school and played in all the All-Star games. When I played in the Senior Bowl in Birmingham, it just so happened that the coaching staff for the South was the New Orleans Saints coaching staff. So, therefore, I got to know all the coaches very well.
My Elite Network: What was it like having Kenny Stabler as your quarterback?
Steve Korte: I can tell you that it was very surreal. I mean I would watch him all the time when he played for the Raiders. Once, when he was sitting next to me on the bus and he asked me to grab him a beer out of the cooler. I wasn’t sure what to do because we were on our way to practice. It was really fun to have those guys around.
My Elite Network: What was it like going from the fans referring to the team as the “Aint’s” to having an incredible season and making the playoffs?
Steve Korte: The whole feel of New Orleans changed once we started winning. It was fun playing for the fans because they appreciated it so much – they love their football players! I mean it’s just it’s crazy. I’ve chosen to stay here because the fans have made me feel so welcome. Once we started winning games it got even crazier.
My Elite Network: Reflecting on your playing days, what do you hope your teammates and fans remember you for?
Steve Korte: For almost a decade, I played with some solid leaders who really played a lot of high-quality football which made me a better player. I want to be remembered for playing hard and giving it my all. I would also like to be remembered for my genuine kindness. I think that some people may assume that I am cocky or arrogant. Once they meet me, they find out that it’s just the opposite… I really can be anybody’s friend. I’ll help anybody at any time and in any situation. I’m just doing my best to be a good citizen and a strong man.
My Elite Network: What are you involved with now?
Steve Korte: I’ve been in sales for the last 25 years. I do technical clinical support of sales in support for cardiac rhythm devices which includes pacemakers and defibrillators.
Author: Celi Leggett
Recently retired from a successful 25 year career in education/administration, Celi Leggett, is known as an amateur photographer being featured in several Mississippi Cookbooks and Colorado College sports publications. Her eye for detail and personal relationship skills bring a sense of thoughtfulness to her writing.