Former TCU running back Ladainian Tomlinson and former Alabama linebacker Derrick Thomas are the big names in this years class of 14 players and two coaches who will be inducted this year into the College Football Hall of Fame, according to a Thursday announcement by the NFF.
We are extremely proud to announce the 2014 College Football Hall of Fame Class,” said Archie Manning, chairman of the National Football Foundation. “Each of these men has established himself among the absolute best to have ever played the game, and we look forward to immortalizing their incredible accomplishments at the new Hall of Fame in Atlanta as an inspiration to future generations.
Thomas setting an Alabama record for 27 sacks in his senior year, also winning the Butkus award, given to the country’s top linebacker. Thomas was a 9x Pro Bowler for the Kansas City Chiefs before dying in 2000 due to complications from a car crash.
Tomlinson wasn’t seen as one of the nations top running backs coming out of high school due to not playing his Senior year in high school, but TCU took the chance and they cashed out on it. Tomlinson led in rushing yards by any running back in the entire nation his Junior and Senior year. Also finishing 4th in Heisman voting in 2000 right behind his soon-to-be teammate, Drew Brees.
The entire class:
CB Dre Bly, North Carolina, 1996-98
OT Tony Boselli, USC, 1991-94
DL Dave Butz, Purdue, 1970-72
LB Shane Conlan, Penn State, 1983-86
QB Joe Hamilton, Georgia Tech, 1996-99
LB John Huard, Maine, 1964-66
RB Darrin Nelson, Stanford, 1977-78, 1980-81
OT Willie Roaf, Louisiana Tech, 1990-92
QB John Sciarra, UCLA, 1972-75
WR Sterling Sharpe, South Carolina, 1983, 1985-87
CB Leonard Smith, McNeese State, 1979-82
LB Derrick Thomas, Alabama, 1985-88
RB LaDainian Tomlinson, TCU, 1997-2000
TE Wesley Walls, Ole Miss, 1985-88
Thomas, Tomlinson, Sharpe, Roaf, Boselli, Conlan, Nelson and Butz were all NFL first-round picks. Boselli was the first ever pick of the Jacksonville Jaguars in 1995, Conlan won a national championship with the Nittany Lions in 1987, Roaf was an 11-time Pro Bowler for the Saints and Chiefs, and Sharpe led the NFL in receptions on three occasions.
Mike Belotti, former coach of Oregon who coached 14 seasons with a record of 116-55. He previously was head coach at Chico State from 1984-88, as well, and his overall record is 137-80-2. And Jerry Moore, who won three national championships as coach of Appalachian State, will also be inducted at the Dec. 9 ceremony at the Waldorf Astoria in New York City.
In the future, the induction announcement will be made the Friday before the College Football Playoff championship game.