Courtesy: National Football Foundation
NEW YORK - From the national ballot of 76 candidates and a pool of hundreds of eligible nominees, Archie Manning, chairman of The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame, announced the 2009 College Football Hall of Fame Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I-A) Class, which includes the names of 16 First Team All-America players and two legendary coaches.
2009 COLLEGE FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME CLASS
PERVIS ATKINS - HB, New Mexico State (1958-60)
TIM BROWN - WR, Notre Dame (1984-87)
CHUCK CECIL - DB, Arizona (1984-87)
ED DYAS - FB, Auburn (1958-60)
MAJOR HARRIS - QB, West Virginia (1987-89)
GORDON HUDSON - TE, Brigham Young (1980- 83)
WILLIAM LEWIS* - C, Harvard (1892-93)
WOODROW LOWE - LB, Alabama (1972-75)
KEN MARGERUM - WR, Stanford (1977-80)
STEVE McMICHAEL - DT, Texas (1976-79)
CHRIS SPIELMAN - LB, Ohio State (1984-87)
LARRY STATION - LB, Iowa (1982-85)
PAT SWILLING - DE, Georgia Tech (1982-85)
GINO TORRETTA - QB, Miami (Fla.) (1989-92)
CURT WARNER - RB, Penn State (1979-82)
GRANT WISTROM - DE, Nebraska (1994-97)
* Selection from the FBS Veterans Committee, deceased
DICK MacPHERSON - 111-73-5 (.601) - Massachusetts (1971-77), Syracuse (1981-90)
JOHN ROBINSON - 132-77-4 (.629) - Southern California (1976-82, 1993-97), Nevada-Las Vegas (1999-2004)
"The NFF Honors Court and its Chairman Gene Corrigan did an exceptional job in selecting the 2009 College Football Hall of Fame Class," said Manning, a 1989 College Football Hall of Famer from Ole Miss. "This year's class represents two centuries of outstanding football players who have reached the pinnacle of success in the collegiate ranks, and we are happy to preserve their legacies in the Hall of Fame."
The 2009 College Football Hall of Fame Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) Class will be inducted at the NFF Annual Awards Dinner on December 8, 2009, at the Waldorf=Astoria in New York City. They will be officially enshrined at the Hall in South Bend, Ind., during ceremonies in the summer of 2010.
Two Heisman Trophy winners (Brown, Torretta)
Seven unanimous First Team All-Americans (Brown, Hudson, McMichael, Spielman, Station, Torretta, Wistrom)
Five consensus First Team All-Americans (Cecil, Lowe, Margerum, Spielman, Station)
Seven multiple-year First Team All-America honorees (Brown - 2, Hudson - 2, Lowe - 3, Margerum - 2, Spielman - 2, Station - 2, Wistrom - 2)
One Maxwell Award winner (Torretta)
Two Walter Camp Players of the Year (Brown, Torretta)
One Davey O'Brien Award winner (Torretta)
Two Lombardi Award winners (Spielman, Wistrom)
Two NFF National Scholar-Athletes (Dyas, Wistrom)
Five Academic All-Americans (Cecil, Dyas, Margerum, Station, Wistrom)
Four members of National Championship teams (Lowe, Torretta, Warner, Wistrom)
Eight members of conference championship teams (Atkins, Hudson, Lowe, McMichael, Spielman, Station, Torretta, Wistrom)
Six decades and two centuries represented: 1890s (1) - Lewis; 1950s (2) - Atkins, Dyas; 1960s (2) - Atkins, Dyas; 1970s (4) - Lowe, Margerum, McMichael, Warner; 1980s (10) - Brown, Cecil, Harris, Hudson, Margerum, Spielman, Station, Swilling, Torretta, Warner; 1990s (2) - Torretta, Wistrom
Nine Conference Championships (MacPherson - 4, Robinson - 5)
15 Bowl berths (MacPherson - 6, Robinson - 9)
32 First Team All-Americas coached (MacPherson - 14, Robinson - 18)
Seven NFF National Scholar-Athletes Coached (MacPherson - 2, Robinson - 5)
1. First and Foremost, a player must have received First Team All-America recognition by a selector organization that is recognized by the NCAA and utilized to comprise their consensus All-America teams.
2. A player becomes eligible for consideration by the Foundation's Honors Courts ten years 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 and his fellow man with love of his country. 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 2008 ballot, the player must have played his last year in 1958 or thereafter. In addition, players who are playing professionally and coaches who are coaching on the professional level are not eligible until after they retire.
5. A coach becomes eligible three years after retirement or immediately following retirement provided he is at least 70 years of age. Active coaches become eligible at 75 years of age. He must have been a head coach for a minimum of 10 years and coached at least 100 games with a .600 winning percentage*.
* Players that do not comply with the 50-year rule and coaches that have not won 60% of their games may still be eligible for consideration by the Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I-A) and Divisional Honors Review Committees, which examine unique cases.
COLLEGE FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME SOUTH BEND, INDIANA
Did You Know?
Only 846 players and 182 coaches have been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame from the more than 4.65 million who have played the game over the past 140 years.
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 19 coaches, including Illinois' Red Grange, Notre Dame's Knute Rockne, Amos Alonzo Stagg and Carlisle's Jim Thorpe.
276 schools are represented with at least one College Football Hall of Famer.
In South Bend, Ind., the current building was built in 1995 as a $17 million state-of-the-art interactive facility for fans of all ages. It attracts over 60,000 people each year to more than 200 events.
Induction for this class of Hall of Famers will take place December 8, 2009 in New York City.
New Mexico State University
Running Back, 1958-60
The only First Team All-America selection (1960) in New Mexico State football history, Pervis Atkins led the Aggies to a perfect 11-0 season and a Border Conference title in 1960. Atkins twice topped the nation in all-purpose yards (1959-60) and holds the New Mexico State single season record with 1,800 all- purpose yards in 1960. During the 1959 season, he led the nation in rushing (971) and punt return yards (241). A two-time all conference selection, he caught touchdown passes in each of two Sun Bowl victories (1959-60). Atkins graduated with a B.A. in Sociology in 1962.
Atkins was drafted in the third round of the 1960 NFL Draft by the Los Angeles Rams. He played seven seasons in the NFL, including stints with the Washington Redskins and Oakland Raiders. He finished his career with 3,300 all-purpose yards and three touchdowns.
Upon retiring from football, Atkins became part of a television sports show and eventually took a job with the Ashley-Famous Talent Agency. The running back turned actor then landed an executive position with ABC and later founded his own talent agency, Atkins and Associates.
Atkins and his wife have four children and five grandchildren, and they currently reside in Los Angeles, California.