12th Man backs Richard Sherman at Mill Creek event

MILL CREEK — Seattle Seahawks defensive player Richard Sherman has fast hands, even off the field. The All-Pro cornerback signed keepsakes for hundreds of blue-and-green-clad fans during an hour-long event at Mill Creek Sports on Tuesday.

The shop, which specializes in autographed athletic memorabilia, sold all 300 tickets for Sherman’s appearance prior to his game-saving defensive play Sunday. With the Seahawks now Super Bowl-bound, fans stood in a queue that spanned the length of the Mill Creek Boulevard strip mall.

Sherman and the autograph seekers were all smiles as he signed everything from simple paper to a helmet.

Susan Bolles of Snohomish waited more than eight hours to reserve the first spot in line.

“I’m the freezing-cold ice-cube woman,” she said.

The longtime season ticket holder said the woman who sits next to her at games is deployed in the military. They have become close friends over the past decade. Bolles wanted to have Sherman sign her friend’s Hawk head to make up for missing the excitement.

“We’re like die-hard fans,” she said.

Since the Seahawks defeated the San Francisco 49ers in Sunday’s NFC Championship Game at CenturyLink Field, Sherman’s post-game tirade in an interview with a Fox Sports reporter has come under fire. Sherman boasted and criticized opposing wide receiver Michael Crabtree after tipping a pass to Crabtree in the last minute of play, securing the 23-17 win.

“Sherman can walk the walk, so he can talk the talk,” Bolles said.

Sherman has apologized for this week’s comments, but for many in Mill Creek on Tuesday night, that was hardly necessary.

“You’re that jacked up after the game,” David Roberts, of Mill Creek, said as he waited in line. “You can’t contain that excitement.”

After Sherman’s big play, Carmen Bailey of Mill Creek cried. She wanted to tell the Compton, Calif., native to never change.

“He’s so inspiring,” she said. “You can make it no matter where you come from. That’s a great message.”

Amy Nile: 425-339-3192; anile@heraldnet.com.

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