The National Football Foundation announced Monday a star-studded group of 13 that will be inducted into College Football Hall of Fame as the class of 2017. Headlining the group is retired Indianapolis Colts and Denver Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, a five-time NFL Most Valuable Player and two-time Super Bowl champion.
Manning wasn’t the only NFL great to make the cut. Already a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, retired Colts and St. Louis Rams running back Marshall Faulk will be enshrined, as will current Minnesota Vikings back and three-time rushing champion Adrian Peterson. Also getting in was Chicago Bears great Brian Urlacher, who went to eight Pro Bowls as a linebacker.
Other inductees who had noteworthy NFL careers include linebacker Bob Crable, a first-round pick of the New York Jets in 1982; quarterback Matt Leinart, the 10th-overall pick by the Arizona Cardinals in 2006; offensive lineman Bob McKay, a first-round pick of the Cleveland Browns in 1970 and former member of the New England Patriots; linebacker Dat Nguyen, who won three Supers Bowls in seven seasons with the Dallas Cowboys; and Mike Ruth, who played two seasons with the Patriots.
Steve Spurrier, who had a two-year head coaching stint with the Washington Redskins, is also set to be enshrined in the College Hall for his contributions on the sideline.
Obviously, NFL achievements have no bearing on entrance into this particular hall, although there’s no denying there’s a distinct pro flare to this group. If nothing else, the class of ’17 should give the National Football Foundation some added visibility in the coming weeks and months.