The National Football Foundation announced the 2012 College Football Hall of Fame Bowl Subdivision Class on Tuesday, May 15th.
14 players will be inducted, and they are: Charles Alexander (TB, LSU, 1975-78), Otis Armstrong (HB, Purdue, 1970-72), Steve Bartkowski (QB, California, 1972-74), Hal Bedsole (SE, Southern California, 1961-63), Dave Casper (TE, Notre Dame, 1971-73), Ty Detmer (QB, BYU, 1988-91), Tommy Kramer (QB, Rice, 1973-76), Art Monk (WR, Syracuse, 1976-79), Greg Myers (DB, Colorado State, 1992-95), Gabe Rivera (DT, Texas Tech, 1979-82), Mark Simoneau (LB, Kansas State, 1996-99), Scott Thomas (S, Air Force, 1982-85), and John Wooten (OG, Colorado, 1956-58).
The coaches that made the Hall of Fame are: Phillip Fulmer coached at Tennessee from 1992-08 and went 152-52-0 for a 74.5 winning percentage. Jimmy Johnson had a superb record of 81-34-4 in his time at Oklahoma State (1979-83) and Miami (Fla.) from (1984-88). R.C. Slocum coached Texas A&M from 1989-02 and had a record of 123-47-2.
The National Football Foundation (NFF) also announced that George Bodenheimer will receive the 2012 NFF Distinguished American Award. Bodenheimer has been with ESPN since he graduated Dennison University in Granville, Ohio. He was named the executive chairman of ESPN on January 1, 2012. NFF President and CEO Steve Hatchell said of Bodenheimer, “College football has greatly benefited from the hard work and leadership of George Bodenheimer. He is the 41st recipient of this award, with prior honorees including Bob Hope, Vince Lombardi, and Jimmy Stewart.
The ceremony took place at the NASDAQ market site in Times Square, and was emceed by ESPN’s Jesse Palmer, who was a top college quarterback and played for the Giants. Among the inductees, Jimmy Johnson and Steve Bartkowski were on hand.
Jimmy Johnson made his mark as the coach of Miami, leading them to the national title in 1987 with a win in the 1988 Orange Bowl over Oklahoma, 20-14. In his time at Miami, the Hurricanes went 52-9 and played in five New Year’s Day bowl games. He was the National Coach of the Year twice, and coached 12 First Team All-Americans. Johnson coached future College Football Hall of Famers Bennie Blades and Russell Maryland, as well as Heisman Trophy winner Vinny Testaverde, the first time a Miami player won it.
Johnson also noted that his Miami players excelled academically, noting the graduation rate was 33 percent when he arrived and 88 percent when he left.
Johnson played on Arkansas’ 1964 national championship team. He is the only person to win a college national championship as a player and coach, and lead a team to a Super Bowl, as he did with the Dallas Cowboys in 1992 and 1993.
Comparing his time at Miami and Dallas, Johnson said, “While winning two Super Bowls was rewarding, the most fun I ever had was coaching college football.” He also said, “The most fun days of my life were at the University of Miami. When you lose two regular season games in four years, that’s a lot of fun.”
Johnson spoke of how he and “best friend” Terry Bradshaw travel on Saturdays for Fox NFL Sunday in Los Angeles, and watch all the college football games on three television sets on their plane.
Steve Bartkowski was quarterback at California from 1972 through 1974, and is the 16th Golden Bear to be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. He earned consensus All-America honors by leading the nation with 2,580 passing yards in 1974. Bartkowski set single-school records in his senior year by attempting 325 passes and racking up 2, 387 yards of total offense. He threw for 300 yards four times, which is a school record, and those games are still in the top five in California history. In addition to football, Bartkowski played baseball, and earned honors as an All-American first baseman in 1973.
Bartkowski was universally named the best quarterback in the West following his senior season in 1974, being named MVP, First Team All-Pac-10, selected to the All-Coast Team, and the NorCal Player of the Year. He was the first pick in the 1975 NFL Draft and played 11 seasons with the Atlanta Falcons and one with the Los Angeles Rams. He was the 1975 NFL Rookie of the Year, made two Pro Bowls, and threw for 24,124 yards in his career.
Bartkowski said, “Obviously a tremendous honor. I’m removed 38 years from college, it’s a figment of my imagination with how long ago I was at college. It’s an absolute thrill, one of the highest honors I’ve ever received, very grateful for it.”
Dave Casper was a tight end at Notre Dame from 1971 through 1973 who College Football Hall of Fame coach Ara Parseghian called “possibly the greatest athlete he ever coached.” Caspar is the 44th Notre Dame player to make the College Football Hall of Fame.
Casper was Notre Dame’s co-captain and offensive MVP during his senior season of 1973. That year, Notre Dame won the national championship and he was a consensus All-American. He was named an NFF National Scholar-Athlete, a CoSIDA Academic All-American, and an NCAA postgraduate scholarship winner.
Casper caught three passes for 75 yards in the 1973 Sugar Bowl, which Notre Dame won 24-23 win over No. 1 Alabama. He was taken in the second round of the 1974 NFL Draft and played 11 seasons for the Oakland Raiders, Houston Oilers, and Minnesota Vikngs.
Ty Detmer had a tremendous career in his time at quarterback of BYU from 1988 to 1991. He won a Heisman Trophy, a Maxwell Award, two Davey O’Brien Awards, and 59 NCAA records. He is the sixth BYU Cougar to make the College Football Hall of Fame.
Detmer was named a consensus All-American twice, and was named national player of the year by such organizations as UPI, CBS, Scripps Howard, and the U.S. Sports Academy. He threw for 15,031 yards and 121 touchdowns, which were the best in the NCAA at the time. He still holds nine NCAA records.
Detmer played for College Football Hall of Fame coach La Vell Edwards, and led BYU to three conference championships, four bowl games, three AP top 25 finishes, a 28-21 against top-ranked and defending national champion Miami in 1990, and a 37-13-2 overall record.
Detmer was selected in the ninth round of the 1992 NFL Draft by the Green Bay Packers, and played 14 years in the NFL with the Packers, Philadelphia Eagles, San Francisco 49ers, Cleveland Browns, Detroit Lions, and Atlanta Falcons.
Art Monk is a member of the NFL Hall of Fame, having been inducted in 2008. He was chosen in the first round of the 1980 NFL Draft and played for the Washington Redskins from 1980 to 1993, and with the New York Jets in 1994. In 1984, he set an all-time single season mark by catching 106 passes. Monk set the all-time career receiving record with 819 career receptions, breaking the record held by Steve Largent.
Monk played at Syracuse from 1976 to 1979, and won the Lambert Trophy as the top college football player in the Eastern U.S. in his freshman and senior seasons. He earned First Team All-America honors in 1979. He is the ninth Syracuse player to make the College Football Hall of Fame.
For more information on the inductees, chec the National Football Foundation’s website: www.footballfoundation.org.