June 1, 2017
THE FLATS – Former Georgia Tech football stars Marco Coleman and Calvin Johnson are among 75 former NCAA Division I FBS student-athletes included on the ballot for induction to the College Football Hall of Fame in 2018, the National Football Foundation (NFF) announced on Thursday.
Coleman and Johnson were selected from a pool of hundreds of nominees to be included on the 2018 ballot. The ballot was emailed to the more than 12,000 NFF members and current Hall of Famers whose votes will be tabulated and submitted to the NFF’s Honors Courts, which will deliberate and select the class. The FBS Honors Court, chaired by NFF Board Member and College Football Hall of Famer Archie Griffin from Ohio State, includes an elite and geographically diverse pool of athletics administrators, Hall of Famers and members of the media.
“It’s an enormous honor to just be on the ballot when you think that more than 5.19 million people have played college football and only 987 players have been inducted,” said NFF president and CEO Steve Hatchell. “So being in today’s elite group means an individual is truly among the greatest to ever have played the game, and we are extremely proud to announce their names. We look forward to revealing the 2018 Class prior to the CFP National Championship in Atlanta, the esteemed home of the College Football Hall of Fame.”
Coleman was a three-year starter and two-time first-team all-ACC and all-America selection as an outside linebacker at Georgia Tech from 1989-91. He was a key member of the Yellow Jackets’ 1990 national championship squad and finished his three-year collegiate career as Tech’s all-time leader in sacks (27.5) and tackles for loss (50) — he now ranks fourth in school history in both categories.
He was selected by the Miami Dolphins with the 12th overall pick in the 1992 National Football League Draft and went on to record 65.5 sacks and 520 tackles over the course of a 14-year NFL career (1992-2005) that included stints with the Dolphins, San Diego Chargers, Washington Redskins, Jacksonville Jaguars, Philadelphia Eagles and Denver Broncos.
One of the most successful wide receivers in the history of both college and professional football, Johnson was a three-time all-conference honoree and two-time first-team all-American during his three-year Georgia Tech career (2004-06). He caught 178 passes for 2,927 yards and 28 touchdowns in three seasons as a Yellow Jacket and still holds six school records — receiving yards in a career and season (1,202 in 2006), touchdown receptions in a career and season (15 in 2006) and 100-yard receiving games in a career (13) and season (seven in 2006).
After winning the Biletnikoff Award and Paul Warfield Trophy (both presented to college football’s top wide receiver) and finishing 10th in balloting for the Heisman Trophy as a senior in 2006, Johnson was selected by the Detroit Lions with the second overall pick in the 2007 NFL Draft. He went on to be three-time first-team All-Pro (2011-13), a six-time Pro Bowler (2010-15) and two-time NFL leader in receiving yards (2011-12) in nine seasons with the Lions (2007-15). He holds four NFL records, including most single-season receiving yards (1,964 in 2012), consecutive 100-yard receiving games (eight), consecutive games with 10-plus receptions (four) and 100-yard receiving games in a season (11) and finished his pro career with 731 catches for 11,619 yards and 83 touchdowns.
This is the first year that Johnson is eligible for induction to the College Football Hall of Fame.
The Hall’s Class of 2018 will be announced on Jan. 8, 2018 in Atlanta, prior to the College Football Playoff national championship game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, and will be inducted on Dec. 4, 2018 as part of the 61st NFF Honors Dinner in New York.
Fifteen former Georgia Tech student-athletes and three former coaches of the Yellow Jackets are already inducted in the College Football Hall of Fame, which is located just one mile from Tech’s midtown Atlanta campus.