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Dat Nguyen


Dat Tan Nguyen

Inducted 2017

Date of Birth



Ft. Chaffee, AR


Texas A&M University (1995-1998)


The only player in Texas A&M history to lead the team in tackles four consecutive seasons, Dat Nguyen is one of the greatest defensive players in Aggie history. The winner of both the Bednarik and Lombardi awards in 1998, Nguyen started all 51 games of his illustrious career and still holds Texas A&M records with 517 career tackles and 30 double-digit tackle games. The 1998 Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year led the Aggies to three bowl berths, including a win in the 1995 Alamo Bowl. Nguyen earned Defensive MVP honors in the 1998 Cotton Bowl despite losing to UCLA after he recorded a still-standing Cotton Bowl-record 15 solo tackles. A two-time First Team All-Big 12 selection, he topped the conference with 149 tackles as a senior and led the Aggies with an interception and 17 tackles to upset No. 1 Kansas State to claim the 1998 Big 12 title. Playing for College Football Hall of Fame coach R.C. Slocum, Nguyen currently ranks eighth in Big 12 history with 423 career tackles (not including bowl games or his freshman year in the Southwest Conference) and second all-time with nine fumble recoveries. Named the 1998 National Defensive Player of the Year by Lindy’s and Chevrolet, he also received Second Team All-Big 12 honors as a sophomore. Nguyen was named the 1995 SWC Freshman of the Year after recording a still-standing single-season A&M record with 65 solo tackles. A member of the Big 12 10th Anniversary Team, Nguyen is enshrined in the Texas A&M, Cotton Bowl, State of Texas Sports and Texas High School Football halls of fame. Drafted in the third round of the 1999 NFL Draft by the Dallas Cowboys, Nguyen spent his entire seven-year pro career with the franchise. He led the Cowboys in tackles in three seasons and was named Second Team All-Pro in 2003. Nguyen holds the distinction of being the first Vietnamese-American to be drafted, play and be recognized as an All-Pro in the NFL. After retiring from the NFL, Nguyen served as an assistant coach for the Cowboys and Texas A&M. Active in the community, he serves on the board of directors for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes in Brazos Valley and San Antonio and the San Antonio Sports Foundation, which focuses on improving school facilities and playgrounds.


Height 6'0"

Weight 215

Career Highlights

  • 1998 All-Conference
  • 1998 Bednarik Award Winner
  • 1998 Lombardi Award winner
  • 1998 Unanimous All-America
  • 1997 All-Conference
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