January 10, 2024

A Star-Studded 2024 College Football Hall of Fame Class

IRVING, Texas (Jan. 8, 2024) – The National Football Foundation (NFF) & College Hall of Fame announced the 2024 College Football Hall of Fame Class during ESPN's "Championship Drive Presented by Allstate."



  • Justin Blackmon – WR, Oklahoma State (2009-11)
  • Paul Cameron – TB, UCLA (1951-53)
  • Tim Couch – QB, Kentucky (1996-98)
  • Warrick Dunn – RB, Florida State (1993-96)
  • Armanti Edwards – QB, Appalachian State (2006-09)
  • Deon Figures – CB, Colorado (1988, 1990-92)
  • Larry Fitzgerald – WR, Pittsburgh (2002-03)
  • Toby Gerhart – RB, Stanford (2006-09)
  • Dan Hampton – DT, Arkansas (1975-78)
  • Steve Hutchinson – OG, Michigan (1997-2000)
  • Antonio Langham – CB, Alabama (1990-93)
  • Randy Moss – WR, Marshall (1996-97)
  • Julius Peppers – DE, North Carolina (1999-2001)
  • Paul Posluszny – LB, Penn State (2003-06)
  • Dewey Selmon – NG, Oklahoma (1972-75)
  • Alex Smith – QB, Utah (2002-04)
  • Kevin Smith – CB, Texas A&M (1988-91)
  • Chris Ward – OT, Ohio State (1974-77)
  • Danny Woodhead – RB, Chadron State [NE] (2004-07) 


  • Mark Dantonio – 132-74-0 (64.1%): Cincinnati (2004-06), Michigan State (2007-19)
  • Danny Hale – 213-69-1 (75.4%): West Chester [PA] (1984-88), Bloomsburg [PA] (1993-2012) 
  • Frank Solich – 173-101-0: (63.1%) Nebraska (1998-2003), Ohio (2005-2020) 

The 19 First Team All-America players and three standout coaches in the 2024 Class were selected from the national ballot of 78 players and nine coaches from the Football Bowl Subdivision and 101 players and 32 coaches from the divisional ranks.
"We are extremely proud to announce the 2024 College Football Hall of Fame Class," said Archie Manning, NFF Chairman and a 1989 College Football Hall of Famer from Mississippi. "Each of these men has established himself among the absolute best to have ever played or coached the game, and we look forward to immortalizing their incredible accomplishments."

The 2024 College Football Hall of Fame Class will officially be inducted during the 66th NFF Annual Awards Dinner Presented by Las Vegas on Dec. 10, 2024, at Bellagio Resort & Casino in Las Vegas.
The inductees will also be recognized at their respective collegiate institutions with NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salutes, presented by Fidelity Investments, during the fall. Their accomplishments will be forever immortalized at the Chick-fil-A College Football Hall of Fame, which is celebrating its 10th Anniversary in Atlanta on Aug. 23. Each inductee will receive a custom ring created by Jostens, the official and exclusive supplier of NFF rings.
The announcement of the 2024 College Football Hall of Fame Class was made today during ESPN's "Championship Drive Presented by Allstate," leading up to the College Football Playoff National Championship.
"We want to thank ESPN for the opportunity to announce the 2024 College Football Hall of Fame Class during today's lead up to the College Football Playoff National Championship," said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. "Today's announcement shines a light on the accomplishments of some of college football's greatest legends. We also want to extend a big thanks to the CFP for their role in today's announcement."



  • 8 unanimous First Team All-Americans (Blackmon [2], Fitzgerald, Gerhart, Hutchinson, Langham, Moss, Peppers, Ward)  
  • 8 consensus First Team All-Americans (Cameron, Couch, Figures, Moss, Posluszny, Selmon, K. Smith, Ward)  
  • 8 multi-year First Team All-Americans (Blackmon, Cameron, Edwards [4x], Moss, Posluszny, Selmon, Ward, Woodhead [3x])  
  • 10 winners of college football major awards (Bednarik Award – PeppersPosluszny [2x]; Biletnikoff Award – Blackmon [2x], Fitzgerald, Moss; Butkus Award – Posluszny; Doak Walker Award – Gerhart; Harlon Hill Trophy – Woodhead [2x]; Jim Thorpe Award – Figures, Langham; Lombardi Award – Peppers; Walter Camp POY Award – Fitzgerald; Walter Payton Award – Edwards [2x])  
  • 7 members of national championship teams (Dunn, Edwards [2x], Figures, Hutchinson, Langham, Moss, Selmon [2x])  
  • 7 conference players of the year (Blackmon, Edwards [2x], Figures, Fitzgerald, Hampton, Moss, A. Smith, Woodhead)  
  • 12 members of conference championship teams (Blackmon, Cameron, Edwards, Figures, Hampton, Hutchinson, Langham, Moss, Selmon, A. Smith, K. Smith, Ward, Woodhead)  
  • 9 players who still hold school records (Blackmon, Couch, Edwards, Fitzgerald, Gerhart, Moss, Peppers, A. Smith, K. Smith, Woodhead)  
  • 10 played for College Football Hall of Fame coaches (Dunn – Bobby Bowden; Edwards – Jerry Moore; Figures – Bill McCartney; Hampton – Frank Broyles & Lou Holtz; Hutchinson – Lloyd Carr; Langham – Gene Stallings; Posluszny – Joe Paterno; Selmon – Barry Switzer; K. Smith – R.C. Slocum; Ward – Woody Hayes)  
  • NFF National Scholar-Athletes (Posluszny, Woodhead)  
  • 12 first-round NFL draft picks (Blackmon, Couch*, Dunn, Figures, Fitzgerald, Hampton, Hutchinson, Langham, Moss, A. Smith*, K. Smith, Ward) [*First Overall Selection]  
  • 12 offensive players (Blackmon, Cameron, Couch, Dunn, Edwards, Fitzgerald, Gerhart, Hutchinson, Moss, A. Smith, Ward, Woodhead)  
  • 7 defensive players (Figures, Hampton, Langham, Peppers, Posluszny, Selmon, K. Smith)  
  • 6 decades represented: 1950s (1) – Cameron; 1970s (3) – Hampton, Selmon, Ward; 1980s (1) – K. Smith; 1990s (5) – Couch, Dunn, Figures, Langham, Moss; 2000s (8) – Edwards, Fitzgerald, Gerhart, Hutchinson, Peppers, Posluszny, A. Smith, Woodhead; 2010s (1) – Blackmon (1)  
  • 2 schools with their first-ever Hall of Fame player (Utah – A. Smith; Chadron State – Woodhead)  


  • 25 conference championships (Dantonio – 3, Hale – 11, Solich – 1)  
  • 2 coaches with the most wins in school history (Dantonio – Michigan State; Hale – Bloomsburg [PA])  
  • 39 bowl/postseason appearances (Dantonio – 14, Hale – 8, Solich – 17)  
  • 29 First Team All-Americans coached (Dantonio – 10, Hale – 6, Solich – 13)  
  • 3 national coaches of the year (Dantonio, Hale, Solich)  
  • 15 conference coach of the year honors (Dantonio – 2, Hale – 10, Solich – 3)  
  • 2 schools with their first-ever Hall of Fame coach or player inductee (West Chester [PA] – Hale; Ohio – Solich)  



1. First and foremost, a player must have received First Team All-America recognition by a selector recognized by the NCAA and utilized to comprise its consensus All-America teams.
2. A player becomes eligible for consideration by the NFF's Honors Court 10 full seasons after his final year of intercollegiate football played.
3. While each nominee's football achievements in college are of prime consideration, his post football record as a citizen is also weighed. He must have proven himself worthy as a citizen, carrying the ideals of football forward into his relations with his community. Consideration may also be given for academic honors and whether or not the candidate earned a college degree.
4. Players must have played their last year of intercollegiate football within the last 50 years*. For example, to be eligible for the 2024 ballot, the player must have played his last year in 1974 or thereafter. In addition, current professional players and/or coaches are not eligible until retirement.
5. A coach becomes eligible three full seasons after retirement or immediately following retirement provided he is at least 70 years old. Active coaches become eligible at 75 years of age. He must have been a head football coach for a minimum of 10 years and coached at least 100 games with a .600 winning percentage.
6. Nominations may only be submitted by the current athletics director, head coach or sports information director (SID) of a potential candidate's collegiate institution.
* Players that do not comply with the 50-year rule may still be eligible for consideration by the Football Bowl Subdivision and Divisional Veterans Committees. Veterans Committee candidates must still meet First Team All-America requirement.



  • When the 2024 Hall of Fame Class is officially inducted in December, only 1,093 players and 233 coaches will have been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame from the nearly 5.71 million who have played or coached the game during the past 154 years. In other words, less than two one-hundredths of a percent (.02%) of the individuals who have played the game have earned this distinction.
  • Founded in 1947, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame inducted its first class of inductees in 1951. The first class included 32 players and 22 coaches, including Illinois' Red Grange, Notre Dame's Knute RockneAmos Alonzo Stagg and Carlisle (PA)'s Jim Thorpe.
  • 323 schools are represented with at least one College Football Hall of Famer.
  • Induction for the 2024 Class will take place Dec. 10, 2024, during the 66th NFF Annual Awards Dinner Presented by Las Vegas.


2024 College Football Hall of Fame Class Bios


Oklahoma State University
Wide Receiver, 2009-11

Justin Blackmon became one of the most dominant receivers in college football history, twice garnering unanimous First Team All-American laurels during his time in Stillwater. The Ardmore, Oklahoma, product now becomes the sixth Oklahoma State player to enter the Hall.
Only the second player in history to twice win the Biletnikoff Award, given to the nation's top receiver, Blackmon was the back-to-back recipient in 2010 and 2011. Each year, he also claimed unanimous First Team All-American honors while finishing fifth in the Heisman Trophy voting in 2010.
Blackmon holds the NCAA record with 14-straight games with at least 100 receiving yards and 14-straight games with at least 100 receiving yards and a touchdown.  He turned in the sixth-best receiving season in NCAA history with 1,782 yards on 111 receptions with 20 touchdowns in 2010. His 20 touchdown receptions in 2010 ranked seventh-most in NCAA history and his 1,782 receiving yards set an NCAA record for a sophomore. As a junior in 2011, his 122 receptions set the 13th-highest total in NCAA history at the time.
He became the first receiver in conference history to be named the Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year, claiming the honor in 2010. A two-time First Team All-Big 12 performer, he ranks third in Big 12 single-season annals with 122 receptions (2011), 1,782 receiving yards (2010) and 20 receiving touchdowns (2010). He led the league in receiving (148.5 ypg), scoring touchdowns (11 ppg) and all-purpose yards (155.5 ypg) in 2010, and in 2011, he led the Big 12 with 9.4 receptions per game. He holds multiple spots in the Pokes' record books, boasting the single-season records- for receptions (122 in 2011), receiving yards (1,782 in 2010) and receiving touchdowns (20 in 2010). His OSU career totals include 253 receptions for 3,564 receiving yards and 42 touchdowns.
Oklahoma State went 32-7 during Blackmon's time in Stillwater. The 2011 campaign produced one of the most successful seasons in school history with the Pokes' first-ever Big 12 title and first outright conference title since 1948. The team finished with a 12-1 record and a final No. 3 AP ranking after a 41-38 victory in the Fiesta Bowl over Stanford. Blackmon was named the game's offensive MVP after catching eight passes for 186 yards and three touchdowns. In 2010, OSU went 11-2, finishing as Big 12 South Co-Champions and marking the school's first 11-win season. They beat Arizona, 36-10, in the Alamo Bowl, finishing No. 13 in the AP Poll. Blackmon earned Offensive MVP honors with two touchdowns and 117 receiving yards.
Selected fifth overall in the 2012 NFL Draft, Blackmon played two seasons for the Jacksonville Jaguars and was named to the 2012 NFL All-Rookie Team. Following his NFL career, he returned home to Ardmore, Oklahoma, and he is a regular participant with the Coaches vs. Cancer initiatives. He was inducted into the Oklahoma State Athletics Hall of Honor in 2023.

Tailback, 1951-53

A two-way player and one of the last great single-wing tailbacks, Paul Cameron possessed natural speed and remarkable instincts, enabling him to do it all at UCLA in the early 1950s. The Burbank, California, native and two-time All-American now becomes the 14th Bruin to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
A triple threat as a powerful rusher, passer and punter, Cameron amassed 3,332 yards of total offense during his career, earning First Team All-America honors in 1952 and consensus laurels in 1953 at tailback. He finished third in the Heisman Trophy voting in 1953 and sixth in 1952. A three-time First Team All-Conference selection, he rushed for 1,451 yards and 19 touchdowns during his career while passing for 1,881 yards and 25 touchdowns. A two-time most valuable player for UCLA, he set seven school records, including most career touchdown passes (25), most total offense (3,332 yards) and most career touchdowns (44).
Cameron led the conference in scoring with 12 touchdowns in 1953 as well as rushing with 134 carries for 672 yards. In 1951, he led the conference in total offense, rushing for 597 yards and passing for another 855 for a total of 1,428 yards and averaging 158.7 per game.
On special teams, he returned nine kickoffs, averaging 20.2 yards per return, and he averaged 13.1 yards on 23 punt returns. He also punted, averaging 41.3 yards per punt in 1953, placing him third in the nation. On the opposite of the ball, he played defensive back, leading the Bruins with four interceptions in 1953.
UCLA went 21-6-1 during his three seasons in Westwood, including winning the Pacific Coast Conference in 1953 and appearing in the Rose Bowl against Michigan State, which was the first game televised nationally in color. The Bruins finished at No. 5 in the final 1953 AP Poll with an 8-2 record and at No. 6 in 1952 with an 8-1 record. His No. 34 UCLA jersey has been retired, and he was a charter member of the UCLA Athletic Hall of Fame in 1984.
Selected in the eighth round (91st overall) of the 1954 NFL Draft, Cameron played defensive back for the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1954 before heading to the CFL to play for the BC Lions from 1956-59.

After playing football, Cameron entered the entertainment industry, becoming a vice president of production with EMI Television. He worked for Disney Productions, Tomorrow Entertainment, and Allied Artists. He served in the U.S. Army from 1954-56. He is a member of the Screen Directors' Guild, the Encino Property Owners Association and the UCLA Scholarship Committee.

University of Kentucky
Quarterback, 1996-98

Arguably the most decorated player in Kentucky history, Tim Couch experienced tremendous success with a spread option offense that landed him seven NCAA records, 14 SEC records, and 26 school records at career's end. The Hayden, Kentucky, native now becomes the sixth Wildcat player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
A consensus First Team All-American in 1998, Couch claimed SEC Player of the Year honors in 1998 while finishing fourth in Heisman balloting in 1998 and ninth in 1997. He notched seven NCAA records during his time in Lexington, including single-game completion percentage (83%), single-season completions (400), and career completion percentage (67.1%). He was a back-to-back finalist for the Davey O'Brien Award as the best quarterback in the nation.
As the field general for the "Air Raid" spread offense of head coach Hal Mumme and offensive coordinator Mike Leach, Couch produced remarkable numbers for the Wildcats. He completed 400 passes for 4,275 yards and 36 touchdowns in 1998, leading the nation in pass completions while landing second in completion percentage, passing yardage and touchdown passes, and fourth in total offense. His 4,275 passing yards in 1998 set a new SEC single-season passing record at the time.
His breakout sophomore campaign featured 363 completions for 3,884 yards and 37 touchdowns while leading the nation in pass attempts, completions, yardage, and completion percentage. He earned Second Team All-SEC honors as a sophomore. During his career, Couch completed 795 passes for 8,435 yards and 74 touchdowns.
The team went 16-18 during his time at UK, but Couch led the Cats to their first victory over Alabama in 75 years in 1997, a spectacular 40-34 overtime victory. The following year, he guided the team to seven wins, the most in 13 years, and an appearance against Penn State in the Outback Bowl, the school's first New Year's Day bowl appearance in 47 years.
The No. 1 overall pick in the 1999 NFL Draft by Cleveland, Couch played five seasons with the Browns, and leading the Browns to the playoffs in 2002.
Couch has been inducted into the UK Athletics Hall of Fame and his number has been retired. He was selected as an SEC Living Legend in 2010, and he was also inducted into the NFHS National High School Hall of Fame in 2021.
Currently residing in Lexington, Kentucky, Couch is a partner with Meridian Wealth Management. He has also worked as a sports analyst for FOX Sports South and the SEC Network. Active in the community, Couch provided the lead financial gift for Kentucky's football practice complex and participated in the fundraising efforts for the Gill Heart Institute.

Florida State University
Running Back, 1993-96

One of the most electrifying players in college football history, Warrick Dunn became the first Florida State player to rush for more than 1,000 yards in three consecutive seasons while leading the Seminoles to the 1993 national title. The New Orleans native now becomes the ninth Florida State player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
Selected as a First Team All-American in 1996 by the Football Writers Association of America and a Third Team selection in 1995 by the Football News, Dunn finished his career as the Seminoles' all-time leader in career touchdowns scored (49), career all-purpose yards (5,321), career rushing yards (3,959), career rush average (6.9 ypp), career 100-yard games (22), single-season rushing yards (1,242 in 1995) and single-season rush average (7.5 ypp in 1995). During his career in Tallahassee, he rushed 575 times for 3,959 yards and 37 touchdowns while catching 132 passes for 1,314 yards and 12 touchdowns. Dunn finished fifth in the 1996 Heisman Trophy voting and ninth in 1995.
A three-time First Team All-ACC selection, he led the league with 8.7 ppg during the 1995 season, and he finished his career ranked sixth in ACC history with 3,744 rushing yards. Helping the Noles capture four-consecutive ACC crowns, he led the team to a 31-1 conference record during career, and he was named a member of the ACC All-Academic Team in 1996.
Playing for Hall of Fame coach Bobby Bowden, FSU went 43-5-1 during Dunn's career, never finishing ranked lower than No. 4. In 1993, the team went 12-1, capping the season with an 18-16 victory over No. 2 Nebraska in the Orange Bowl to claim the national title. In 1994, FSU went 10-1-1, finishing the season with a 23-17 win over Florida in the Sugar Bowl and a final No. 4 AP ranking. In 1995, the Noles produced a 10-2 record, including a 31-26 victory over Notre Dame in the Orange Bowl and landing at No. 4 in the final AP Poll. During Dunn's senior season, the Noles went 11-1, appearing in the Sugar Bowl against Florida and finishing at No. 3 in the polls.
A first round pick in the 1997 NFL Draft (12th overall) by the Buccaneers, Dunn played 12 seasons in the NFL for Tampa Bay (1997-01, 2008) and the Atlanta Falcons (2002-07). He was the 1997 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year, and he made the Pro Bowl three times. He was named the 2004 Walter Payton Man of the Year, the NFL Byron Whizzer White Man of the Year in 2008 and NFL Bart Starr Award recipient in 2009.
Known for his prolific philanthropic work, Dunn founded Warrick Dunn Charities and the Warrick Dunn Family Foundation. Its flagship program, Homes for the Holidays, has awarded more than $2 million in furnishings and $500,000 in down payment assistance to more than 200 single-parent families. His charitable work earned him the Heisman Humanitarian Award in 2010, and he earned NCAA Silver Anniversary Award in 2022. He also holds a minority stake in Atanta Falcons.
Dunn is a Georgia Sports Hall of Fame inductee, and Florida State retired his No. 28.

Appalachian State University
Quarterback, 2006-09

One of the most thrilling players in college football history, Armanti Edwards became the first-ever two-time Walter Payton Award winner while leading Appalachian State to two FCS national titles and authoring one of the greatest upsets in college football annals. The Greenwood, South Carolina, native, now becomes the second App State player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
A four-time First Team All-American (2006-09), Edwards became the first Division I player in NCAA history with more than 10,000 passing yards and 4,000 rushing yards in a career. The two-time Walter Payton Award winner as FCS National Player of the Year went 42-7 as a starter for Hall of Fame coach Jerry Moore. His memorable victories include two FCS national titles and the historic 34-32 upset of No. 5 Michigan to open the 2007 season in Ann Arbor.
Edwards amassed 14,753 yards of total offense in his career (10,392 passing with 4,361 rushing) and 139 total touchdowns (74 passing with 65 rushing). He holds the FCS record for career rushing touchdowns by a quarterback at 65. He is tied with College Football Hall of Famer Steve McNair for the most FCS seasons (four) with 3,000-plus yards of total offense while ranking No. 2 in career rushing yards by a quarterback (4,361). His career total offense mark of 14,753 yards ranks No. 4. He also set 14 conference and 64 school records.
During Edwards' career, App State went 28-2 in conference games and posted four consecutive league titles. A four-time All-SoCon selection (three times First Team), Edwards was twice named the SoCon Player of the Year (2008, 2009), and he is a 2016 inductee to the Southern Conference Hall of Fame. App State retired his No. 14 in 2023.
A third-round pick in the 2010 NFL Draft by Carolina, Edwards played four years in the NFL with the Panthers and the Browns before heading to the CFL for six seasons. He won the 2017 Grey Cup with the Toronto Argonauts.
A member of the SoCon Academic Honor Roll, the App State Athletics Academic Honor Roll, and the Dean's List, Edwards volunteered with the Boone Celebrity Serve and reading books to children at area schools during his undergraduate years. He currently is a stock investor.

University of Colorado
Cornerback, 1988, 1990-92

A lockdown cornerback and the recipient of the Jim Thorpe Award, Deon Figures thwarted opposing offenses while helping Colorado claim three conference titles and the 1990 national championship. The Bellflower, California, native becomes the tenth Colorado player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
A consensus First Team All-American, Figures took home the 1992 Jim Thorpe Award as the nation's best defensive back. He twice led the team in pass deflections, posting 12 in 1991 and eight in 1992. He led the team with six interceptions in 1992, and he only allowed six completions in more than 400 man-coverage snaps during his prolific senior campaign. He also won the Jack Tatum Award from the Touchdown Club of Columbus and concluded his career with 176 tackles, five tackles for loss, 13 interceptions, 27 pass breakups (second-most all-time at CU by career's end), one forced fumble, two fumble recoveries and one blocked kick.
The Buffs would win three Big Eight Championships (1989, 1990, 1991 – shared) while Figures was in Boulder. He was named the Big Eight Defensive Player of the Year in 1992, and he was an All-Big Eight selection three times, earning unanimous First Team honors in 1992, Second Team honors in 1991 and Honorable Mention accolades in 1988. He was also named the Big Eight Defensive Newcomer of the Year in 1988.
Bosting exceptional speed, Figures was utilized by Colorado on punt returns his senior year, and he led the team in punt returns (42) and punt return yards (479) during his senior campaign. He still holds the CU record for most punt returns (10) and punt return yards (167) in a single game (vs. Kansas State in 1992).
CU went 36-10-3 during Figures' time in Boulder, playing for Hall of Fame coach Bill McCartney, and the Buffs claimed the 1990 national title with a 10-9 victory in the Orange Bowl against Notre Dame. Figures intercepted Irish quarterback Rick Mirer's pass on the final play of the game to secure the win and the national title with a 11-1-1 record. The Buffs would go 8-3-1 in 1991, landing at No. 20 in the final polls, and 9-2-1 in 1992, finishing at No. 13 in the polls. They appeared in the Blockbuster and Fiesta bowls, respectively following the 1991 and 1992 seasons.
Figures played in 1993 Hula Bowl before being selected in the first round of the 1993 NFL Draft (23rd overall) by Pittsburgh. He appeared in 93 games in the NFL with the Steelers from 1993-96 and Jacksonville from 1997-98, making nine career interceptions.
Figures currently owns a cleaning business in Aurora, Colorado, and he was inducted into the CU Athletic Hall of Fame in 2014.

University of Pittsburgh
Wide Receiver, 2002-03

One of the most dazzling players ever, Larry Fitzgerald produced one of the most decorated careers for a wide receiver in history of college football, including becoming the first sophomore to win honors as the Walter Camp Player of the Year. The Minneapolis, Minnesota, native now becomes the 20th Pitt player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
A 2003 unanimous First Team All-American and the Heisman Trophy runner-up, Fitzgerald was virtually unstoppable in 2003 during his sophomore campaign, compiling 92 catches for 1,672 yards (18.2 avg.) and 22 touchdowns. Facing double and even triple coverage each week, Fitzgerald led the nation in receiving yards per game (128.62 avg.) and touchdown catches. His performance in 2003 also earned him the Biletnikoff Award as the nation's best receiver, and he became the first-ever sophomore to win Walter Camp Player of the Year award. The 2003 Big East Offensive Player of the Year and the 2002 Big East Rookie of the Year, Fitzgerald was a two-time unanimous First Team All-Big East selection.
Despite only playing two seasons with the Panthers, Fitzgerald totaled 161 catches for 2,677 yards (16.6 avg.) and a Pitt-record 34 touchdowns. He caught a touchdown in 18-consecutive games to set an NCAA record. He also owns the NCAA record as a freshman and sophomore (34); single-season receiving yards by a sophomore (1,672); and is tied for most games catching a touchdown in a single season (12). In total, Fitzgerald set or tied four NCAA marks, eight Big East records and 11 Pitt marks.
The team went 17-9 during his two years with the Panthers, including a win in the 2002 Insight Bowl and a final No. 18 ranking and an appearance in the 2003 Continental Tire Bowl.
The third overall selection in the 2004 NFL Draft, Fitzgerald spent his entire 17-year pro career with the Arizona Cardinals (2004-20). An 11-time Pro Bowler and member of the NFL 100 All-Time Team, he ranks second in NFL history in receiving yards (17,492) and receptions (1,432). Following the 2016 season, Fitzgerald was named Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year.
Fitzgerald has done extensive philanthropic work, both in the United States and globally. Through his two foundations -- the Larry Fitzgerald First Down Fund and the Carol Fitzgerald Memorial Fund -- he has helped thousands by providing funds for kids and families in crisis. To honor his late mother, Carol, he has been heavily involved in furthering breast cancer awareness and research.
Fitzgerald's No. 1 was officially retired by Pitt in 2013. He currently works as an analyst for ESPN, and he holds a minority stake in the Phoenix Suns.

Stanford University
Running Back, 2006-09

Balance, power, vision, and speed combined to give Toby Gerhart the tools to make him the best running back in the nation during his tenure at Stanford, earning him multiple spots in the record books and now a place in the College Football Hall of Fame. The Narco, California native, becomes the 20th Stanford player in the Hall.
A 2009 unanimous First Team All-American and winner of the Doak Walker Award as the nation's best running back, Gerhart was the Heisman Trophy runner-up, finishing 28 points behind Mark Ingram, the closest race in Heisman history. During his prolific senior campaign, Gerhart led the nation in points (178), touchdowns (29), rushing attempts (343), rushing yards (1,871) and rushing touchdowns (28). His numerous accolades in 2009 also included CBS Sports Offensive Player of the Year; the Touchdown Club of Columbus's Archie Griffin Award winner as the nation's most valuable player; the Jim Brown Award winner as nation's top running back.
The Pac-10 Offensive Player of the Year and a two-time All-Pac-10 performer, Gerhart earned First Team honors as a senior and Second Team accolades as a junior. He holds the Pac-12 single-season record for points scored (178), touchdowns scored (29) and rushing touchdowns (28). Excelling in the classroom, he was a First Team Academic All-Pac-10 selection in 2009 and a Second Team Academic pick in 2008. He received the Tom Hansen Conference Medal as Stanford's most outstanding male student-athlete in 2009 and the Al Masters Award in 2010.
Gerhart is Stanford's all-time leader in career (44) and single-season (28 in 2009) rushing touchdowns as well as single-season scoring (172 points in 2009). He holds multiple spots in the Stanford record books, and he finished his career with 671 rushes for 3,522 yards and 44 touchdowns as well as 39 receptions for 395 yards. Playing in 38 career games, he averaged 92.7 yards per game. He broke the Stanford single-season rushing record as a junior, finishing with 1,136 yards on 210 carries. He smashed his own record the next year with 1,871 yards on 343 carries, becoming just the second running back in school history to rush for 1,000 or more yards in consecutive seasons.
Stanford went 18-31-0 during Gerhart's tenure, steadily improving to an 8-5 season during his senior campaign and a berth in the Sun Bowl, which marked the Cardinal's first postseason appearance in eight years.
Gerhart also starred on the baseball diamond at Stanford, but he opted for the NFL after college. Selected in the second round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the Vikings, Gerhart played for Minnesota from 2010-13 and for Jacksonville from 2014-15.
Gerhart returned to Stanford in 2018 as an MBA student, graduating in 2020. He currently works as a Director of Sales Enablement at Asurion, an information technology services and consulting firm located in Nashville, Tennessee. He also founded Toby's Treadmills, a speed and development program for local athletes, and serves as a motivational speaker.

University of Arkansas
Defensive Tackle, 1975-78

Agile with tremendous reflexes and quickness, Dan Hampton possessed a unique set of skills that allowed him to penetrate the offensive line and establish him as one of the most feared defenders of his era. The Jacksonville, Arkansas, product, now becomes the 10th Arkansas player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
A 1978 First Team All-America selection by the American Football Coaches Association, Hampton logged 98 tackles, including 18 tackles for loss during his senior campaign. He was named the Southwest Conference (SWC) Defensive Player of the Year, also earning First Team All-SWC honors and recognition as the outstanding SWC Player of the Year from the Houston Post.
Hampton was a Second Team All-SWC selection his junior season, and he had 70 tackles, including eight for loss. In 1976, as a sophomore, Hampton made 48 tackles (2 for loss) and recovered two fumbles. As a freshman, he had 21 tackles, including 4 for loss. In his career, he amassed a total of 237 tackles (126 unassisted) with 32 being behind the line of scrimmage and recovered six fumbles.
Arkansas went 35-10-2 during his tenure in Fayetteville. Hampton played for Hall of Fame coaches Frank Broyles (who was the head coach) and Jimmy Johnson (the defensive coordinator who recruited him) during his first two seasons with the Razorbacks. As a freshman, he helped the Razorbacks to a share of the SWC title, a 31-10 victory over Georgia in the 1976 Cotton Bowl and a final No. 7 AP ranking. The Razorback defense played a key role in the bowl game, preventing a Bulldogs' first down from the second quarter until late in the fourth. His sophomore team finished 5-5-1.
Hall of Fame coach Lou Holtz replaced Broyles as the head coach in 1977, and the Razorbacks went 11-1, beating Oklahoma 31-6 in the Orange Bowl to claim a final No. 3 AP ranking. During his senior season, Arkansas would tally a 9-2-1 record, playing UCLA to a 10-10 tie in the Fiesta Bowl and a final No. 11 AP ranking. Hampton helped the defense sack UCLA QB Steve Bukich eight times in the bowl game.
Selected in the first round (fourth overall) of the 1979 NFL Draft, Hampton played 12 seasons with the Chicago Bears. He was a five-time All-Pro and a four-time Pro Bowl selection. He was the 1982 NFL Defensive MVP and helped the Bears win Super Bowl XX in 1985. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2002.
Hampton currently resides in the Chicago area, and he co-hosts Pro Football Weekly, a syndicated TV show, and hosts the Chicago Bears post-game show on WGN Radio. Active in the community with various charities in the Chicago area and in Little Rock, Hampton appears regularly at the NFF Chicago Metro Chapter events. Hampton was named to University of Arkansas Sports Hall of Honor (1991), Arkansas Sports Hall of Fame (1992), an SEC Football Legend (2017) and the Arkansas All-Century Team and Arkansas All-Decade Team (1970-79).

University of Michigan
Offensive Guard, 1997-2000

A fierce competitor at 6-foot-5 and 299 pounds who towered over opponents, Steve Hutchinson dominated the line, never allowing a sack during his final two seasons at Michigan. The four-time First Team All-Big Ten selection and Fort Lauderdale, Florida, native becomes the 34th Michigan player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
Hutchinson arrived at Michigan as a defensive lineman but switched over to the offensive line during his redshirt season, and he would go on to become a unanimous First Team All-America selection in 2000. He started 45-of-47 career games, and the Wolverines compiled a 41-8 overall record and a 27-5 Big Ten mark during his four seasons as a starter. The Big Ten's Offensive Lineman of the Year in 2000, Hutchinson was a finalist for the 2000 Rotary Lombardi Award after being a semifinalist during the 1999 season. He was the Touchdown Club of Columbus Offensive Lineman of the Year in 2000.
A two-year team captain, Hutchinson led the Wolverines to four consecutive bowl wins, including a 21-16 victory over Washington State at the Rose Bowl following the 1997 season. Michigan finished the season 12-0 and at No. 1 in the final AP Poll, giving the Wolverines their first national title since 1948. The Wolverines went 10-3 in 1998, claiming a 45-31 victory over Arkansas in the Florida Citrus Bowl and a final No. 12 AP ranking.
The team notched a 10-2 record in 1999, capping the season with a 35-34 win over Alabama in the Orange Bowl and finishing No. 5 in the final polls. During Hutchinson's final season in Ann Arbor in 2000, the Wolverines finished 9-3, ending the season with a 31-28 win over Auburn in the Florida Citrus Bowl and a final No. 11 AP ranking. Michigan never finished lower than 12th nationally while claiming three Big Ten Championships and a national title during his four seasons with the Wolverines.
Playing for Hall of Fame Coach Lloyd Carr all four years, Hutchinson protected the blind side for several Wolverine quarterbacks who set school passing records, including Brian Griese (a 1997 NFF National Scholar-Athlete), Tom Brady (1998, 1999) and Drew Henson (1999, 2000).
Selected in the first round (17th overall) of the 2001 NFL Draft by Seattle, Hutchinson played 12 years in the league with the Seahawks (2001-05), Vikings (2006-11) and Titans (2012). He was named to the Pro Bowl seven times, named a First Team All-Pro five times, and a Second Team All-Pro two times. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2020.
Hutchinson currently resides in the Nashville, Tennessee, area, and he interned with the Titans' personnel department. He has also worked as a college football analyst with FOX, the NFL Network and the Big Ten Network. He has lent his support to various charitable causes over the years, including the NFF Middle Tennessee Chapter in Nashville.

University of Alabama
Cornerback, 1990-93

A 1993 unanimous First Team All-American, Antonio Langham possessed exceptional speed and instincts, allowing him to set the record for the most interceptions at Alabama while leading the Crimson Tide to the 1992 national title. The Town Creek, Alabama, native becomes the 21st Crimson Tide player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
Langham won the Jim Thorpe Award and the Jack Tatum Trophy in 1993, both honoring the best defensive back in the nation. He was a three-time All-SEC selection, earning First Team honors as a junior and senior and Second Team accolades as a sophomore.
Playing all four years for Hall of Fame Coach Gene Stallings, Langham was the captain on the 1993 team, and he claimed the Tide's career interception record with 19 picks, which ranks second in SEC history. He also set the Tide records for interceptions returned for a touchdown in a career (3) as well in a single season (2, 1992). Langham finished his career with 141 tackles, six tackles for loss, 19 interceptions (including three for touchdowns) and 22 pass breakups. He also returned two punts for 54 yards, and he returned one blocked kick for a touchdown during his career.
Langham led Bama to a 40-9-1 record and four postseason berths during his four seasons in Tuscaloosa. He helped Alabama notch the school's first 13-win season during the 1992 national title campaign, which also marked the Tide's first undefeated season since 1979. His contributions helped the Tide claim the SEC title in 1992, and SEC West Division titles in 1992 and 1993. His 27-yard pick-six in the inaugural SEC Championship game against Florida in 1992 is widely considered among the most consequential plays in college football history, preserving the Tide's undefeated run to the national title.
The Tide went 7-5 in 1990, appearing in the Fiesta Bowl against Louisville. The following season, Bama notched an 11-1 record, defeating Colorado 30-25 in the Blockbuster Bowl and ranking No. 5 in the final AP Poll. In 1992, No. 1 Alabama would go undefeated (13-0) and claim the national title following a 34-13 win against Miami (FL) in the 1993 Sugar Bowl. His senior campaign produced a 9-3-1 record for the Tide, culminating with a 24-10 win over North Carolina in the Gator Bowl and a final No. 14 AP ranking.
Selected in the first round (ninth overall) of the 1994 NFL Draft by Cleveland, Langham was named the 1994 NFL Rookie of the Year by the Pro Football Writers Association. He played seven years in the NFL, including stints with the Browns, Ravens 49ers and Patriots. He is one of only two players to have played for the Cleveland Browns before they became the Baltimore Ravens and then return to the Browns after the expansion team formed in 1999.
Residing in Birmingham, Alabama, Langham is the president of a real estate firm and an assistant football coach at Sylacauga High School. He volunteers at the Children's Village, which provides a "family unit" for orphaned, abused or neglected children and as greeter at Christian Life Church.

Marshall University
Wide Receiver, 1996-97

A fierce competitor with superior athletic ability, Randy Moss rewrote the record books in only two seasons at Marshall. The Rand, West Virginia, native now becomes the fifth Marshall player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
A two-time First Team All-American (consensus in 1996 and unanimous in 1997) as a wide receiver, Moss also earned First Team All-America honors as a kicker returner in 1996. He claimed the Biletnikoff Award in 1997, honoring the best wide receiver in the nation while finishing fourth in the Heisman Trophy voting. He was named the Southern Conference Freshman of the Year in 1996, and he was named the Mid-American Conference Offensive Player of the Year and the Vern Smith Award recipient as the conference's MVP in 1997. He was a two-time First Team All-Conference selection (Southern Conference in 1996 and Mid-American Conference in 1997).
In two seasons, Moss caught 174 passes for 3,529 yards and 54 touchdowns while setting national, conference and school records. On special teams, he returned 32 kickoffs for 875 yards, averaging 27.3 yards, and 25 punts for 271 yards, averaging 10.8 yards, during his career. Moss's 26 touchdown receptions in 1997 set an FBS (formerly Division I-A) record, and he caught a touchdown pass in all 13 games that season while amassing 96 receptions for 1,820 yards.
In Moss's two seasons with the team (quarterbacked by 1999 NFF Campbell Trophy® winner Chad Pennington in 1997), Marshall went 28-3 overall. His first season, the Thundering Herd went 15-0 and won the Division I-AA (now FCS) National Championship. Moss caught 78 passes for 1,709 yards and 28 touchdowns that season, leading the nation. His second season, Marshall won the Mid-American Conference Championship in the school's first year at the FBS level with a 10-3 record. Moss claimed MVP honors in the Mid-American Championship game in 1997, and the team went on to play Ole Miss in the Motor City Bowl.
He still holds Marshall records for receiving yards in a game (288), most touchdowns receptions in a game (5), most receiving yards in a season (1,820), most touchdowns receptions in a season (28), and most touchdown receptions in a career (54). He also still holds the Mid-American Conference records for most touchdown receptions in a game (5) and most touchdown receptions in a season (26).
A first round selection (21st overall) in the 1998 NFL Draft by Minnesota, Moss played 14 seasons with the Vikings, Raiders, Patriots, Titans and 49ers. He was the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year in 1998, and he was a four-time All-Pro selection and six-time Pro Bowl pick. He was the NFL receiving leader five times, and he was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2018.
Moss currently works as a football analyst for ESPN. His many charitable activities have included the Smile Network, which treats children with cleft palates, Links for Learning, which helps needy children in his home state of West Virginia, and the Women and Children's Hospital of Charleston, West Virginia. He was inducted into the Marshall Athletic Hall of Fame in 2010 and the West Virginia Sports Hall of Fame in 2019.

University of North Carolina
Defensive End, 1999-2001

A menace in the backfield with explosive speed, Julius Peppers ranks among the greatest defenders to ever play the game. The Wilson, North Carolina, native now becomes the seventh Tar Heel player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
A unanimous First Team All-American in 2001 and a Second Team All-American in 2000, Peppers won both the Bednarik Award as the nation's top defensive player and the Lombardi Award as the nation's top lineman in 2001, making him the first Tar Heel defensive player to ever win a national college football award. He was named the 2001 Chevrolet Defensive Player of the Year, and he finished 10th in the 2001 Heisman Trophy voting and was a 2001 finalist for the Bronko Nagurski Trophy, which goes to the nation's top defender.
In 2000, he led the nation with 15 sacks and established a school record with 24 tackles for loss. The following year, Peppers led a defense that finished first in the ACC and 15th in the nation in total defense while guiding UNC to a 16-10 victory over Auburn in the 2001 Peach Bowl.
A two-time First Team All-ACC selection, he led the conference in tackles for loss (24) and sacks (15) in 2000, and his 30.5 career sacks rank eighth and his 53 tackles for loss rank 15th in ACC annals despite only playing three seasons. He holds the Heels' single-game sack record with four, and he led the team with three interceptions in 2001. His 53 career tackles for loss and 30.5 career sacks rank him second all-time at UNC. He boasts two of the top 10 single-season sack performances, ranking second with 15 in 2000 and eight with 9.5 in 2001.
His career totals also included 177 total tackles, five interceptions, two interceptions returned for touchdowns, five forced fumbles, two fumble recoveries and one fumble returned for a touchdown.
One of the top two-sport athletes in ACC history as a walk-on forward on Carolina's basketball team, Peppers averaged 7.1 points and 4.0 rebounds to help the Tar Heels claim a share of the 2001 regular-season ACC championship.
The second overall pick in the 2002 NFL Draft by the Carolina, Peppers played 17 seasons in the NFL with the Panthers, Bears and Packers.  He was the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2002, and he was a four-time First Team All-Pro, three-time Second Team All-Pro and nine-time Pro Bowl selection.
Currently residing in Coral Gables, Florida, Peppers is a special assistant to the Carolina Panthers. He donated $350,000 to the UNC Alumni Association scholarship fund, and he was the Carolina Panthers' 2018 NFL Man of the Year nominee.  He was inducted into the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame in 2021, and he was named to the ACC's 50th Anniversary Team in 2003.

Penn State University
Linebacker, 2003-06

An All-American on the field and in the classroom, Paul Posluszny is the only defensive player to ever win National Defensive Player of the Year and CoSIDA Academic All-American of the Year honors in the same season. The Aliquippa, Pennsylvania, native now becomes the 20th Nittany Lion player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
A two-time First All-American (consensus in 2005), Posluszny is one of only two two-time winners of the Bednarik Award as the best defender in the nation, claiming the award in 2005 and 2006. He claimed the 2005 Butkus Award as the best linebacker in the nation and was a finalist in 2006.
A two-time First Team All-Big Ten selection in 2005-06 and Second Team pick in 2004, Posluszny set a conference record being named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week five times during his career while guiding Penn State to a share of the 2005 Big Ten title.
The school's first two-time team captain since 1968, Posluszny was the first Nittany Lion to lead the team in tackles three times and the first to post three 100-tackle seasons. A starter in his last 37 games, he finished his career with 372 tackles, 35 tackles for loss, nine sacks, two interceptions and three forced fumbles. The team MVP in 2006, Posluszny's 372 career tackles rank second all-time at Penn State.
Playing for Hall of Fame coach Joe Paterno, Posluszny led Penn State to a 26-23 victory over Florida State in the Orange Bowl and a final No. 3 AP ranking after the 2005 season. He also helped the Lions notch a 20-10 victory in the Outback Bowl and a final No. 24 AP ranking after the 2006 season.
A 2006 NFF National Scholar-Athlete and a finalist for the Campbell Trophy® with a 3.56 GPA, Posluszny was named the CoSIDA Academic All-American of the Year in 2006, a two-time First Team Academic All-American and a three-time Academic All-Big Ten selection. In addition to his bachelor's degree in finance from Penn State, he has an MBA from Carnegie Mellon University (PA).

Selected in the second round (34th overall) of the 2007 NFL Draft by the Buffalo, Posluszny played 11 seasons in the pros with the Bills and the Jaguars, making the Pro Bowl in 2013.
Currently residing in Jacksonville, Florida, Posluszny is a strategy analyst with Raytheon Missiles & Defense. His community service work has included partnering with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Northeast Florida to provide 250 laptops to local children and volunteering with Farm Share, a Jacksonville-area nonprofit dedicated to feeding hungry Floridians.

University of Oklahoma
Nose Guard, 1972-75

An All-American on the Oklahoma teams that claimed back-to-back national titles, Dewey Selmon dominated on the defensive line for the Sooners during one of the most impressive winning streaks in college football history. The Eufaula, Oklahoma, native becomes the 23rd Oklahoma player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
A two-time First Team All-American (consensus in 1975), Selmon starred for Hall of Fame coach Barry Switzer and the Sooners from 1972-75, helping them to national titles in 1974 and 1975. Oklahoma sewed up the 1975 national championship by beating No. 5 Michigan 14-6 in the Orange Bowl as Selmon recorded 13 tackles, an OU bowl game record by a defensive lineman. His Sooners held the Wolverines to just 202 offensive yards in the game.
With Selmon as a starter from 1973-75, OU went a remarkable 32-1-1, boasting four-consecutive top-three final AP rankings at No. 2 in 1972, No. 3 in 1973 and No. 1 in 1974 and 1975. The Sooners allowed just 12.1 points per game in 1973, 8.4 in 1974 and 12.8 in 1975. His 34-career starts were the second-most by an OU defensive lineman at the end of his career. His teammates included his brothers Lee Roy Selmon a fellow Hall of Fame inductee and a 1975 NFF National Scholar-Athlete, and Lucious Selmon, also a First Team All-American. In 2022, OU unveiled a statue of the three brothers in recognition of their unique contributions at OU.
Selmon finished his OU career with 325 tackles, 25 tackles for loss (for 109 yards), three forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. In a 16-13 win over Texas in 1974, he registered 22 tackles, which still stands as the single-game school record by a defensive lineman. He is one of only five OU defensive linemen in school history to record 100-plus tackle seasons twice. A two-time First Team All-Big Eight selection, Selmon contributions also included four-straight Big Eight titles from 1972-75 by the Sooners.
Selmon also excelled in the classroom, earning recognition as a two-time CoSIDA Academic All-American (1975 First Team and 1974 Second Team) and a four-time Academic All-Big Eight selection. He was inducted into the CoSIDA Academic All-America Hall of Fame in 2010.
Selmon was selected in the second round of the 1976 NFL Draft by Tampa Bay. After a seven-year NFL career between the Buccaneers and San Diego Chargers, he returned to Oklahoma to work as an oil and gas consultant, later opening his own construction business.
His profile work in the community includes volunteering with the United Way, serving on the board of the Shine Foundation, chairing fundraising campaigns for the Sam Nobel Oklahoma Museum of Natural History, the American Lung Association, the Ronald McDonald House and the Children's Miracle Network. He was inducted into the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame in 2012 and the Orange Bowl Hall of Fame in 2022. His son, Zac, is the director of athletics at Mississippi State.

University of Utah
Quarterback, 2002-04

An exceptionally gifted passer and runner, Alex Smith went 21-1 as a starter, establishing himself as a transformational player during a new era of college football and the emergence of the spread offense. The La Mesa, California, product now becomes the first player from Utah to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
Selected as a First Team All-American by the Football Writers Association of America in 2004, Smith finished fourth the Heisman Trophy voting while claiming Sports Illustrated National Player of the Year honors. A Mountain West Conference (MWC) First Team selection in 2004 and Second Team in 2003, Smith led the Utes to MWC titles in 2003 and 2004. He was named the MWC Offensive Player of the Year in 2004.
Appearing in just two games as a freshman, Smith became the starter as a sophomore in 2003 after Urban Meyer took over as the Utes new head coach. In 11 games, Smith threw for 2,247 yards with 15 touchdowns, culminating with a win in the Liberty Bowl and a No. 21 final AP ranking. The following season, Smith led Utah to its first-ever 12-0 season and a BCS bowl berth, the Fiesta Bowl against Pitt. Alex Smith claimed MVP honors in the game, passing for 328 yards and four touchdowns in the 35-7 win. The Fiesta Bowl appearance marked the first time a team from a non-automatically qualifying BCS conference played in a BCS bowl, earning the Utes the distinction as the inaugural "BCS Buster." The Utes would finish at No. 4 in the final AP Poll.
During the 2004 season, Smith ranked second nationally in efficiency rating (176.5), third in yards per attempt (9.3), fifth in completion percentage (67.5), and fifth in passing touchdowns (32). At the conference level, he set the record for career completion percentage (66.3% – now ranks fifth), and he led the MWC in passing (2,952 yards) and all-purpose yards per game (298.6 ypg) during 2004 season.
Smith holds Utes records for career pass efficiency (164.4), career yards per play (7.19), single-season touchdown passes (32 in 2004) and single-season total touchdowns (42 in 2004).  He set Utah records for career completion percentage (63.3% -- now 2nd), single-season pass efficiency (176.5 in 2004 – now 2nd), and career quarterback wins (21 – now 4th). Smith finished his career with 389 completions for 5,203 yards and 47 touchdowns, adding 286 rushes for 1,072 yards and 15 touchdowns on the ground.
Smith also excelled in the classroom, earning CoSIDA Academic All-American of the Year honors and as a First Team Academic All-America pick in 2004. He was also a two-time Academic All-Mountain West selection.
The No. 1 overall pick in the 2005 NFL Draft by San Francisco, he played 16 years for the 49ers, Chiefs and Commanders. He was a three-time Pro Bowl selection, and he was named the recipient of the 2020 NFL Comeback Player of the Year Award after recovering from a life-threatening injury to his leg.
Currently residing in Atherton, California, Smith works as an ESPN analyst and public speaker. He founded the Alex Smith Foundation, which provides support for foster teens, and the Guardian Scholars Program, which helps foster youths transition to college. He has testified at legislative hearings in California and in Congress on behalf of foster children, and the Boston Globe recognized his foundation in 2013 as one of the most effective athlete-run charities.
The Alex Smith Strength & Conditioning Center, which opened in the summer of 2009 at Utah, bears his name, and he appeared as a speaker at the NFF Campbell Trophy® Summit in 2022 and 2023. He was inducted into the Utah Athletics Hall of Fame in 2021 and the Academic All-America Hall of Fame in 2020.

Texas A&M University
Cornerback, 1988-91

Exceptional speed and great ball instincts allowed Kevin Smith to control the perimeter, helping Texas A&M lead the nation in total defense in 1991 and win the Southwest Conference (SWC) title. The Orange, Texas, native now becomes the 12th Texas A&M player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
A consensus First Team All-American in 1991, Smith led a Texas A&M defensive squad that led the nation in total defense (222.4 ypg) and passing defense (136.4 ypg). The 1991 squad ranked fourth nationally in rushing defense, capping opponents at 86.0 yards per game and seventh nationally in scoring defense at 13.1 points per game.
On special teams, Smith led the team in punt returns in 1991, recording 19 for 274.5 yards for a 14.5 average, which ranked the Aggies seventh nationally. Texas A&M won the 1991 Southwest Conference title and appeared in Cotton Bowl against Florida State, posting a 10-2 record and a final No. 12 ranking in the AP Poll.
Coached by College Football Hall of Famer R.C. Slocum, Smith and the Aggies went 34-14-1 during his four seasons in College Station, and the team made three bowl appearances. In addition to the Cotton Bowl after the 1991 season, Texas A&M played Pitt in the Sun Bowl after the 1989 season, ending the year at 8-4 and with a No. 20 ranking in the final AP Poll.
The Aggies claimed a 65-14 victory over BYU in the 1990 Holiday Bowl, finishing the season at 9-3-1 and No. 15 in the final AP Poll. In the Holiday Bowl, Smith posted four tackles, a fumble recovery and three pass breakups as the Aggie defense held Heisman Trophy winner Ty Detmer to just 120 yards.
A three-time First Team SWC performer, Smith tied the conference record with 20 career interceptions. His 20 picks also stand as an Aggie record, and his 289-career interception return yards and his three interceptions returned for a touchdown also place him first in the Aggie record books. He set a school record with 32-career pass breakups, which has since been broken. His nine interceptions in 1989 rank him second and his seven interceptions in 1990, place him fifth for single seasons in the Aggie books. Smith finished his career with 133 tackles, 20 interceptions, 32 pass breakups, five fumble recoveries and five forced fumbles.
His punt returns in 1991 also earned him a couple spots in the Aggie record books with his 73-yard return against Texas and his 71-yard return against Rice landing him at No. 11 and No. 17, respectively.
Selected in the first round (17th overall) of the 1992 NFL Draft by Dallas, Smith played eight years with the Cowboys, helping the franchise win three Super Bowls.
Smith currently resides in the Dallas area, working as an entrepreneur. He was inducted into the Texas A&M Athletics Hall of Fame in 1997.

Ohio State University
Offensive Tackle, 1974-77

Playing at 6-foot-4 and 272-pounds, Chris Ward cleared a path for the Ohio State offense, producing thousand-yard rushers in each of his four years on the line while helping Archie Griffin become the only two-time Heisman Trophy winner in history. The Dayton, Ohio, native now becomes the 28th Ohio State player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
A two-time First All-American, earning consensus honors in 1976 and unanimous laurels in 1977, Ward played for Ohio State and Hall of Fame coach Woody Hayes during an impressive run that produced a 29-3 record. The team's performance earned berths in four January bowl games, including two appearances in the Rose Bowl (1975, 1976), a slot in the 1978 Sugar Bowl and a 27-10 win in the 1977 Orange Bowl over Colorado. The Buckeyes finished with final rankings of No. 3, No. 4, No. 4 and No. 11, respectively during his time in Columbus. The team ranked in the Top 10 during all but three weeks of his career, including a 14-week run at No. 1.
His blocking allowed future Hall of Famer Archie Griffin to rush for 1,695 yards in 1974 and 1,450 yards in 1975, becoming the first and only person to win the Heisman Trophy twice. The following two seasons, he opened holes for tailbacks Jeff Logan, who gained 1,248 yards in 1976, and Ron Springs, who led the Big Ten in rushing in 1977 with 1,166 yards.
The Buckeyes claimed four consecutive Big Ten titles during the period as co-champs in 1974, 1976, and 1977 with an outright crown in 1975. A three-time First Team All-Big Ten selection, Ward helped OSU lead the Big Ten in rushing in 1974 and 1977 and in scoring in 1974, 1975 and 1977. The 1977 team captain, Ward was a three-year starter, who started in 36-consecutive games and culminated his college career by playing in the 1978 Hula Bowl.
Ward also excelled in the classroom, earning Academic All-America honors and Academic All-Big Ten laurels in 1975. He was inducted into the Ohio State Athletics Hall of Fame in 1989. The fourth overall pick in the 1978 NFL Draft by the New York Jets, Ward played a total of eight seasons in the NFL with the Jets, Saints, Dolphins and 49ers.
Residing in Los Angeles, Ward is a real estate agent, a life insurance agent, a mortgage loan officer, as well as a financial consultant. An ordained minister, he launched Ward International, a secular after-school program that targets youth in underserved communities to become successful members of society while teaching them bible ethics. He is also the president of Pro Players North America, an organization of professional athletes and entertainers who are committed to changing the lives of young people. He is also the son-in-law of the late Jim Brown, the 1995 College Football Hall of Fame inductee from Syracuse.

Chadron State University [NE]
Running Back, 2004-07

One of most gifted and accomplished running backs in history, Danny Woodhead finished his career as college football's all-time rushing leader across all levels of play. The North Platte, Nebraska, native now becomes Chadron State's first-ever College Football Hall of Fame inductee.
A three-time First Team All-American (2004, 2006-07), Woodhead twice claimed the Harlon Hill Trophy as the most valuable player in Division II (2006, 2007). A four-time Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) First Team selection, he was the RMAC Offensive Player of the Year three times after being selected as the RMAC Offensive Freshman of the Year in 2004. He was named the most valuable player for Chadron State all four years in college, and he was also named the All-Century Offensive Player by the RMAC.
Woodhead finished his Chadron State career as college football's all-time rushing leader with 7,962 yards, and he owned 21 NCAA Division II records when he graduated. The records included most consecutive games rushing 100 or more yards (16), games rushing 200 or more yards (19), most consecutive games scoring a touchdown (38) and most yards rushing in a season (2,756 in 2006).
He averaged 181 rushing yards per game during his career and 6.89 yards per carry, while rushing for 101 career touchdowns. He added 129 receptions for 1,417 yards and eight touchdowns, finishing his career with 109 total touchdowns and tying him for the most in college football annals. He also had 101 yards on kickoff returns, giving him a total of 9,480 all-purpose yards by career's end. He holds virtually every rushing/all-purpose record in RMAC and Chadron State annals.
Chadron State went 35-11 during Woodhead's four years with the team. The Eagles claimed two RMAC titles with consecutive 12-win seasons in 2006 and 2007, and they went 2-2 in the NCAA Division II Playoffs.
A 2007 NFF National Scholar-Athlete and Campbell Trophy® finalist, Woodhead also excelled in the classroom, notching a 3.72 GPA as a double major. He was named a CoSIDA First-Team Academic All-American in 2006 and 2007 and the inaugural recipient of the RMAC Scholar-Athlete of the Year award in 2007.
Undrafted in 2008, Woodhead signed with the New Jets as a free agent, and he went onto a successful 10-year NFL career with the Jets, Patriots (playing in Super Bowl XLVI), Chargers and Ravens. He retired after the 2017 season with 4,936 all-purpose yards and 32 touchdowns.
Woodhead currently is the co-CEO of Arise Venture, a business consulting firm in Nebraska. A scratch golfer, Woodhead made a run at becoming a professional golfer, falling just short of qualifying for the U.S. Open. He was inducted into the Chadron State College Athletic Hall of Fame in 2023.

Cincinnati (2004-06), Michigan State (2007-19)
Head Coach, 132-74-0 (64.1%)

The all-time winningest coach in Michigan State history, Mark Dantonio led the Spartans to three Big Ten championships, a Rose Bowl win and a berth in the 2015 College Football Playoff, building on a head coaching career that began with a successful three-year run at Cincinnati. Born in El Paso, Texas, and growing up in Zanesville, Ohio, Dantonio now becomes the fifth Michigan State head coach to enter the College Football Hall of Fame and the fourth coach from Cincinnati.
Dantonio notched a 114-57 record during his 13 years in East Lansing and 18-17 mark during his three seasons at Cincinnati for an overall record of 132-74 with a 64.1 winning percentage.
Dantonio won more Big Ten Championships (three in 2010, 2013 and 2015) and bowl games (six) than any other coach in Spartan history while also ranking first with 12 bowl appearances, including three New Yea's Six bowls (Rose-2013 and Cotton-2014, 2015). His 63.9 winning percentage (a 69-39 record) in Big Ten games is a school best while he stands tied for first in AP Top 25 finishes (seven) and second in Big Ten wins (69), home wins (67) and AP Top 25 wins (21). His Rose Bowl victory was in the 100th edition of "The Granddaddy of Them All."
Dantonio is one of just seven Big Ten coaches to have at least six 10-win seasons, including Hall of Fame coaches Lloyd Carr, Joe Paterno, Bo Schembechler and Jim Tressel, and he is one of just four Big Ten coaches to have at least five 11-win seasons. Dantonio made history by becoming the first Big Ten coach to record five 11-win seasons in a six-year span following MSU's 12-win campaign in 2015. Prior to Dantonio's arrival, MSU had not recorded an 11-win season in its history and had just two 10-win seasons (1965, 1999). Dantonio finished 8-5 overall (.615) vs. Michigan, the highest winning percentage of any Spartan coach against the archrival Wolverines.  
A two-time Big Ten Coach of the Year (2010, 2013), Dantonio led Michigan State to Top 25 finishes seven times, including No. 24 in 2008, No. 14 in 2010, No. 10 (USA TODAY) in 2011, No. 3 in 2013, No. 5 in 2014, No. 6 in 2015, No. 15 (Associated Press) in 2017. Dantonio finished his career ranked No. 11 in the Big Ten record books in both overall wins (114) and Big Ten wins (69). Dantonio had 11 winning seasons in his 13 years in East Lansing, tying Hall of Fame Coach Duffy Daugherty for the most winning seasons by a Spartan head coach. He was named National Coach of the Year by both CBS Sports and Rivals in 2010, and he was finalist for the Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year Award in 2015.
At Cincinnati, Dantonio led the Bearcats to two bowl appearances in his three years, establishing him as one of the nation's up-and-coming coaches while leading the program's transition from Conference USA to the BIG EAST Conference.
Dantonio helped develop 10 First Team All-Americans and 12 selections overall, and he helped produce 41 First Team All-Big Ten selections. Thirty-one Spartans were chosen in the NFL Draft under Dantonio's watch.
In addition, 219 Spartans earned Academic All-Big Ten honors, including nine Academic All-America selections and NFF National Scholar-Athletes and Campbell Trophy® finalists Kirk Cousins (2011), Max Bullough (2013) and Mike Sadler (2014).
In his three seasons at Cincinnati, 21 of his players earned All-BIG EAST honors and 40 received academic all-conference recognition.
Dantonio spent 40 years in collegiate coaching, including 16 seasons as a head coach and stints as an assistant at Ohio State, Michigan State, Kansas, Youngstown State (under Hall of Fame Coach Jim Tressel), Akron, Butler, Purdue, and Ohio. He played defensive back for South Carolina from 1976-78.
Active in the community, Dantonio and his wife, Becky, have raised funds for numerous charities, scholarship programs and the Children's Miracle Network at the Sparrow Children Center's in Lansing. They also hosted an annual women's football clinic nearly every year of his tenure with proceeds going to local charities. For his work in the community, Dantonio received the 2016 Gene Stallings Award, which is given annually to college football head coaches for their work in the community.

West Chester [PA] (1984-88), Bloomsburg [PA] (1993-2012)
Head Coach, 213-69-1 (75.4%)

One of winningest coaches in Division II history, Danny Hale won an astounding 75.4% of his games during a 25-year head coaching career that included a 20-year stint at Bloomsburg University (PA) and began at West Chester University (PA) in 1984. Hale now becomes the first person from West Chester and the second person from Bloomsburg to the College Football Hall of Fame.
At Bloomsburg, Hale posted a record of 173-56-1 (75.4%) and holds the school record for most coaching victories. Overall, in 25 years as a head coach, he had a mark of 213-69-1 (75.4%) and ranked among the top five active coaches in NCAA Division II in winning percentage and victories at the time of his retirement.
In his 20 seasons as head coach at Bloomsburg, Hale led the Huskies to 11 outright or shared Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) Eastern Division titles and eight NCAA postseason playoff berths. In his final 13 seasons (2000-2012), Bloomsburg was one of the most successful NCAA Division II programs with a combined record of 121-32 (79.1%). He guided the Huskies to seven 10-win seasons. Before his arrival, Bloomsburg had only one 10-win season (1985 at 12-1) since the program's inception in 1892.
Hale was named the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) District I Coach of the Year nine times, the third-highest total in AFCA history and twice winning the honor in consecutive seasons (2000 and 2001 and 2005 and 2006). He was named the PSAC Eastern Division Coach of the Year 10 times, including four-straight times from 1994 to 1997 and back-to-back years in 2005 and 2006. Hale was also a finalist for the Liberty Mutual Coach of the Year Award in 2006 and was featured on ABC in a special hosted by the late Keith Jackson.
Hale's most memorable season came in 2000 as the Huskies advanced to the NCAA Division II National Championship game, eventually losing to Delta State. After losing the first two games of the season, Bloomsburg rattled off 12-consecutive victories. In the national semifinals, the Huskies rallied from 19 points down to stun UC-Davis, 58-48, to advance to the title game for the first time in program history. Hale earned the AFCA Division II National Coach of the Year award following the season.
Hale coached six First Team All-Americans and 96 First Team All-Conference players, including Harlon Hill Award winners Irv Sigler (1997) and Franklyn Quiteh (2013), who both earned the award as the nation's best Division II football player. He also coached Jahri Evans and Matt Feiler, with each playing in the NFL for more than a decade.
At West Chester, Hale went 40-13 (75.5%), won three PSAC East titles, and advanced to the NCAA playoffs in 1988. Prior to West Chester, Hale was an offensive line and defensive coordinator at Colgate from 1981 to 1983. He was also the offensive line coach at Bucknell from 1975-80 and was defensive coordinator and linebacker coach at Vermont in 1974.
Hale is a graduate of West Chester, earning his bachelor's and master's degrees in health and physical education in 1968 and 1973. He was an All-Conference pick at West Chester and earned the team's most valuable player in the 1967 State Championship game. He also lettered in track and field three times. He is a member of the West Chester Football, the Delaware County Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports and the Bloomsburg University Athletic halls of fame.
In 1968, Hale signed with the Pottstown Firebirds, the semi-professional farm club of the Philadelphia Eagles, before entering the Marine Corps, where he played middle linebacker for the Quantico Marines. Following a three-year stint, he was honorably discharged as a first lieutenant in 1972.
Hale, who earned an honorary degree from Bloomsburg in 2001, went into the motel business after retiring from coaching, and he is a member of the Bloomsburg Elks Lodge and Prison Ministry.

Nebraska (1998-2003), Ohio (2005-2020)
Head Coach, 173-101-0 (63.1%)

Ranking fourth for most victories among active FBS head coaches at the time of his retirement in 2021, Frank Solich built a legacy of winning at both Ohio and Nebraska that has earned him a spot in the College Football Hall of Fame. The Cleveland, Ohio, product now becomes the first inductee ever from Ohio and the seventh coach from Nebraska to enter the Hall.
Solich notched an overall record of 173-101 for a 63.1 winning percentage during his 22 years as a head coach, including 115-82 (58.4%) during his 16 years at Ohio and 58-19 (75.3%) during his six-year run with the Cornhuskers.
The winningest coach in Mid-American Conference history with 115 overall wins, Solich led the Bobcats to four MAC East titles (2006, 2009, 2011, 2016), and his 77 conference wins rank second only behind College Football Hall of Fame coach Herb Deromedi, who posted 90 victories during his career at Central Michigan. He and Deromedi are tied at 16 years for longest tenured coach in MAC history. His 115 wins also rank second in Bobcat program history, only behind Don Peden who had 121 victories from 1924-46.
Prior to Solich's arrival in Athens, the Bobcats had enjoyed only two winning seasons in the previous 22 years, and they had not appeared in a bowl game since 1968 and only two postseason appearances in program history. Solich quickly filled the void during his second season with a berth in the 2006 GMAC Bowl, and Solich's teams would go on to appear in 11 bowl games during his tenure. Solich's teams can also claim the first five bowl victories in Bobcat history, with back-to-back wins in the 2011 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl and 2012 Independence Bowl and three consecutive victories in the 2017 Bahamas Bowl, 2018 DXL Frisco Bowl and 2020 Famous Idaho Potato Bowl.
He guided Ohio to 12-straight non-losing seasons, with six years of at least nine wins, including a 10-win campaign in 2011. He won the Battle of the Bricks, the rivalry game between Ohio and Miami (OH), 11 out of 15 seasons, and he coached the Bobcats to a major upset, beating Penn State, 24-14, in Happy Valley during the season opener in 2012.
Solich coached Nebraska to a Big 12 title (1999) and three Big 12 North Division titles (1999, 2000, 2001). The Cornhuskers posted at least nine wins in 5 of his 6 seasons as head coach, including a 12-1 record and No. 3 final ranking in 1999. He later led the Huskers to an 11-2 record and an appearance against Miami (FL) in the BCS National Championship Game at the 2002 Rose Bowl. He coached Nebraska to three top 10 finishes (No. 3 in 1999, No. 8 in 2000, No. 8 in 2001) and victories over Tennessee in the 2000 Fiesta Bowl and Northwestern in the 2000 Alamo Bowl.
He coached 13 total First Team All-Americans, including College Football Hall of Fame inductee Eric Crouch at Nebraska, who won the Heisman Trophy, the Walter Camp National Player of the Year award and Davey O'Brien Award, and he coached seven Academic All-Americans, including 2000 NFF Campbell Trophy recipient Kyle Vanden Bosch. He coached 28 First Team All-Conference players at Nebraska and 31 at Ohio.
He was named Home Depot Coach of the Year in 1999 and a finalist for the Paul "Bear" Bryant Award in 2001. He was also the Big 12 Coach of the Year in 1999 and 2001 and MAC Coach of the Year in 2006.
Solich served as an assistant at Nebraska from 1979-97, coaching the running backs, before becoming the head coach. As an assistant to Hall of Fame coach Tom Osborne, Solich was part of the coaching staff on three national championship teams (1994, 1995, 1997), and he recruited and coached Heisman Trophy winner and College Football Hall of Famer Mike Rozier.
Solich was also a three-year letterman at Nebraska (1963-65), playing fullback and serving as team captain for the 1965 season. He delivered the first 200-yard rushing game in Nebraska history in 1965. He played on three Big Eight Championship teams (1963, 1964, 1965), and he was inducted into the Nebraska Football Hall of Fame inductee as a player in 1992 and as a coach in 2012. He began his coaching career as a high school head coach in Nebraska for more than a decade.
Solich participated yearly with the Ohio football team in Turn It Gold, a nonprofit focused on fighting against childhood cancer. He was named the president of the American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) in 2019 and received the Tom Osborne Legacy Award the same year. He currently serves as Special Assistant to the Athletics Director at Ohio.

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