|Former NC A&T star Elvin Bethea headlines the 2013 Class of The Black College Hall of Fame.|
The Black College Football Hall of Fame has just announced the members of its 2013 Hall of Fame Class. The class includes six members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. Check out the list below:
1. Elvin Bethea (NC A&T)
While at NC A&T Bethea was a two-way player for the Aggies. After terrorizing CIAA offenses for four years, Bethea was drafted by the Houston Oilers to play offensive lineman. He earned his way to the Pro Football Hall of Fame as a defensive end in 1993.
2. Ken Houston (Prarie View)
Like Bethea, Houston played both ways for Prarie View A&M. How good was Houston? Good enough to go from All-American center and linebacker to Pro Bowl defensive back. The ten-time Pro Bowler was selected to the Hall of Fame in 1986.
3. Charlie Joiner (Grambling)
Out of all the players coached by Grambling’s Eddie Robinson, none of them were as good as long as Charlie Joiner. Joiner played an astounding 18 NFL seasons and finished his career as the NFL’s leader in receptions, yards and games. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1996.
4. Shannon Sharpe (Savannah State)
After starring at Savannah State as a wide receiver, Sharpe was nearly cut by the Broncos as a rookie. Luckily for Sharpe and Denver, they decided to keep him. He finished his career as his career as the all-time leader in receptions, yards and touchdowns as a tight end.
5. Jackie Slater (Jackson State)
Slater spent his college career blocking for Walter Payton. He also helped pave the way for Eric Dickerson’s record breaking 1984 season. After playing in 259 games from 1976 to 1995, Slater was selected to the Hall of Fame in 2001.
6. Larry Little (Bethune-Cookman)
Despite being a three-time All-SIAC selection in the 1960’s, Little went undrafted. He would later sign with the Miami Dolphins and was one of the members of that hallowed 1972 team that went undefeated. Little was selected to the Hall of Fame in 1993.
7. Ed “Too Tall” Jones (Tennessee State)
Not only did he have one of the great nicknames of all-time, but he may have been one of the greatest athletes of his time. He came to Tennessee to play basketball, but the 6’9 Jones eventually found his way on to the football field. He was the first player from an HBCU drafted first overall by an NFL team in 1974 and would become one of the major cogs in the Dallas Cowboys “Doomsday Defense.”
8. Joe Gilliam (Tennessee State)
Gilliam grew up around the campus of Tennessee State and by the time he left in 1971, he had shattered every record the school ever had. Gilliam would start for portions of the Pittsburgh Steeler’s 1974 and ’75 seasons, earning two Super Bowl titles.
9. Charlie Brackens (Prarie View)
Cho Cho was a trail blazer, becoming the first HBCU quarterback to be drafted by an NFL team whe he was selected by the Packers in the 16th round of the 1955 draft. Despite his amazing winning percentage as a college QB, Brackins threw two incomplete passes in one game and never saw the field again.
10. John Merritt (Jackson State, Tennessee State)
Big John coached at Jackson State and Tennessee State, winning 235 games and losing just 63 in 31 years of coaching. Merritt was selected to the College Football Hall of Fame and Tennessee State continues to honor him by hosting the John Merritt Classic every year.
11. Charlie Neal (Broadcaster)
Neal has worked in several of the nation’s biggest media markets, providing commentary and insights on HBCU Sports. Neal joined ESPNU in 2005.