Bob Stoops Named Member of 2021 College Football Hall of Fame Class

​Click here for the full announcement from the National Football Foundation.

IRVING, Texas (Jan. 11, 2021) – The National Football Foundation (NFF) & College Hall of Fame announced on January 11 the 2021 College Football Hall of Fame Class during “SportsCenter” on ESPN.

Former Oklahoma head coach Bob Stoops was named as one of the two coaches in this illustrious class. Stoops led his 1999 Oklahoma Sooners to the Independence Bowl – the final college football game of the 20th century against the Ole Miss Rebels. Despite falling to David Cutcliffe’s Rebels, Stoops led Oklahoma to a National Championship victory the next year in 2000 – the lone National Championship of his head coaching career.

2021 COLLEGE FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME CLASS

PLAYERS:

  • Harris Barton – OT, North Carolina (1983-86)
  • David Fulcher – DB, Arizona State (1983-85)
  • Dan Morgan – LB, Miami [FL] (1997-2000)
  • Carson Palmer – QB, Southern California (1998-2002)
  • Tony Romo – QB, Eastern Illinois (1999-2002)
  • Kenneth Sims – DT, Texas (1978-81)
  • C.J. Spiller – RB/KR, Clemson (2006-09)
  • Darren Sproles – RB, Kansas State (2001-04)
  • Aaron Taylor – OT, Notre Dame (1990-93)
  • Andre Tippett – DE, Iowa (1979-81)
  • Al Wilson – LB, Tennessee (1995-98)

COACHES:

  • Rudy Hubbard – 83-48-3 (63.1%); Florida A&M (1974-85)
  • Bob Stoops – 190-48-0 (79.8%); Oklahoma (1999-2016)

The 11 First Team All-America players and two standout coaches in the 2021 Class were selected from the national ballot of 78 players and seven coaches from the Football Bowl Subdivision and the 99 players and 33 coaches from the divisional ranks.

“We are extremely proud to announce the 2021 College Football Hall of Fame Class,” said Archie Manning, NFF Chairman and a 1989 College Football Hall of Famer from Mississippi. “Each of these men has established himself among the absolute best to have ever played or coached the game, and we look forward to immortalizing their incredible accomplishments.”

The 2021 College Football Hall of Fame Class will officially be inducted during the 63rd NFF Annual Awards Dinner on Dec. 7 alongside the 2020 Hall of Fame Class (the 2020 event was canceled due to COVID-19).

The inductees will also be recognized at their respective collegiate institutions with NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salutes, presented by Fidelity Investments, during the fall. Their accomplishments will be forever immortalized at the Chick-fil-A College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta, and each inductee will receive a custom ring created by Jostens, the official and exclusive supplier of NFF rings and awards.

“With two College Football Hall of Fame classes, the NFF Annual Awards Dinner will prove to be one of the biggest events in the NFF’s history when it returns this December,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “We are beyond excited to announce the 2021 electees and look forward to making induction worth the wait for the 2020 class.”

The announcement of the 2021 Class was made today during the Noon ET edition of “SportsCenter” on ESPN.

“We want to thank ESPN for the opportunity to announce the 2021 College Football Hall of Fame Class during ‘SportsCenter,'” said Hatchell. “Today’s announcement shines a light on the accomplishments of some of college football’s greatest legends.”

 
BOB STOOPS
University of Oklahoma (1999-2016)
Head Coach, 190-48-0 (79.8%)
 

Oklahoma’s all-time winningest coach, Bob Stoops is the only coach in history to win a national championship and all four BCS bowl games. He posted a 79.8 winning percentage during his remarkable 18-year tenure, returning the Sooners to one of the elite programs in college football. Stoops is the sixth Oklahoma coach to be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.

Prior to his arrival at Oklahoma, the proud Sooner program was five years removed from a winning record and hadn’t produced double-digit victories since 1987. Coaching at Oklahoma from 1999-2016, Stoops never had a losing record en route to a school record 190 career wins, including 14 seasons of 10-plus victories (the most of an FBS coach from 2000-16). He led the Sooners to four BCS National Championship Game appearances, winning the 2000 national title after a perfect 13-0 season that culminated with a win over Florida State in the Orange Bowl. Leading OU to a bowl game in each of his 18 seasons (a school record), Stoops claimed nine postseason victories, including wins in the Cotton, Fiesta, Orange, Rose and Sugar bowls. The sixth-fastest coach to ever reach 150 wins (187 games), he guided the Sooners to top 25 finishes in all but three seasons, including seven top five rankings.

A two-time national coach of the year and six-time Big 12 Coach of the Year, Stoops led Oklahoma to 10 Big 12 titles while posting an impressive 121-29 (.807) conference record during his career. His teams averaged 10.6 wins per season, and he owned a 101-9 home record, with wins in each of his first 37 games at Gaylord Family – Oklahoma Memorial Stadium. Stoops’ 2008 team went down as the highest scoring team in college football history, scoring a total of 716 points and averaging 51 points per game. A combined 25-11 against the Sooners’ biggest rivals Oklahoma State and Texas, he also posted a 66.7 winning percentage vs. AP Top 25 teams, the best in the country during his reign at OU.

Stoops coached 38 First Team All-Americans at Oklahoma, including seven Heisman Trophy finalists and two winners in Jason White (2003) and Sam Bradford (2008). He also coached three NFF National Scholar-Athletes, including 2015 Campbell Trophy® recipient Ty Darlington. In 2019, Stoops was inducted into the OU Sports Hall of Fame.

A four-year starter at Iowa under College Football Hall of Fame Coach Hayden Fry, Stoops excelled in 1982 as a team captain, First Team All-Big Ten selection and Iowa’s MVP. The Youngstown, Ohio, native began his coaching career as an assistant under Fry at Iowa, followed by a stint at Kent State. After coaching under Hall of Famer Bill Snyder at Kansas State, he joined Hall of Famer Steve Spurrier‘s staff and helped the Gators win the 1996 national title as defensive coordinator.

In 2001, he started the Bob Stoops Champions Foundation to provide support to children and families in the Norman and Oklahoma City areas. In 2018, Stoops joined with current OU head coach Lincoln Riley and College Football Hall of Fame Coach Barry Switzer to create the HBC Champions Foundation to supply financial contributions, positive experiences and support to ill or disadvantaged children in Oklahoma. After briefly coming out of retirement in 2020 to coach the Dallas Renegades in the XFL, he now serves as a special assistant to the athletics director at OU.

 

2021 COLLEGE FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME CLASS NOTES

PLAYERS:
    • NFF National Scholar-Athlete (Barton)
    • Heisman Trophy winner (Palmer)
    • unanimous First Team All-Americans (Morgan, Sims, Spiller, Taylor)
    • consensus First Team All-Americans (Fulcher (2), Palmer, Sims, Taylor, Tippett, Wilson)
    • multi-year First Team All-Americans (Fulcher (2), Sims (2), Taylor (2))
    • winners of college football major awards (Morgan – Butkus, Bednarik, Nagurski; Palmer – Heisman; Romo – Walter Payton; Sims – Lombardi; Taylor – Lombardi)
    • member of a national championship team (Wilson)
    • conference players of the year (Barton, Morgan, Palmer, Romo (3), Spiller)
    • members of conference championship teams (Morgan, Palmer, Romo (2), Sproles, Tippett, Wilson (2))
    • players who still hold school records (Morgan, Palmer, Romo, Sims, Spiller, Sproles, Tippett, Wilson)
    • played for College Football Hall of Fame coaches (Fulcher – John Cooper, Sproles – Bill Snyder, Taylor – Lou Holtz, Tippett – Hayden Fry, Wilson – Phillip Fulmer)
    • first-round NFL draft picks (Barton, Morgan, Palmer, Sims, Spiller, Taylor, Wilson)
    • offensive players (Barton, Palmer, Romo, Spiller, Sproles, Taylor)
    • defensive players (Fulcher, Morgan, Sims, Tippett, Wilson)
    • 3 decades represented: 1980s (4) – Barton, Fulcher, Sims, Tippett; 1990s (3) – Morgan, Taylor, Wilson; 2000s (4) – Palmer, Romo, Spiller, Sproles
    • school with its first-ever Hall of Fame player (Eastern Illinois – Romo)

COACHES:

    • 2 national championships (Hubbard – 1, Stoops – 1)
    • Black national championships (Hubbard)
    • 12 conference championships (Hubbard – 2, Stoops – 10)
    • Most wins in school history (Stoops)
    • 23 Bowl/postseason appearances (Hubbard – 5, Stoops – 18)
    • 36 First Team All-Americans coached (Stoops)
    • national coach of the year honors (Stoops)
    • conference coach of the year honors (Stoops)
 
SELECTION CRITERIA

1. First and foremost, a player must have received First Team All-America recognition by a selector recognized by the NCAA and utilized to comprise its consensus All-America teams.

2. A player becomes eligible for consideration by the NFF’s Honors Court 10 full seasons 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. 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 2021 ballot, the player must have played his last year in 1971 or thereafter. In addition, current professional players and/or coaches are not eligible until retirement.

5. A coach becomes eligible three full seasons after retirement or immediately following retirement provided he is at least 70 years old. Active coaches become eligible at 75 years of age. He must have been a head football coach for a minimum of 10 years and coached at least 100 games with a .600 winning percentage.

6. Nominations may only be submitted by the current athletics director, head coach or sports information director (SID) of a potential candidate’s collegiate institution. Nominations may also be submitted by the president/executive director of a dues-paying chapter of the National Football Foundation.

* Players that do not comply with the 50-year rule may still be eligible for consideration by the Football Bowl Subdivision and Divisional Veterans Committees. Veterans Committee candidates must still meet First Team All-America requirement.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME QUICK FACTS
  • Including the 2021 Hall of Fame class, only 1,038 players and 223 coaches have been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame from the nearly 5.47 million who have played or coached the game during the past 151 years. In other words, less than two one-hundredths of a percent (.02%) of the individuals who have played the game have earned this distinction.
  • 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 22 coaches, including Illinois’ Red Grange, Notre Dame’s Knute RockneAmos Alonzo Stagg and Carlisle (PA)’s Jim Thorpe.
  • 314 schools are represented with at least one College Football Hall of Famer.
  • Induction for the 2021 Class will take place Dec. 7 during the 63rd NFF Annual Awards Dinner. The event will also feature the induction of the 2020 Hall of Fame Class.

About The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame
Founded in 1947 with early leadership from General Douglas MacArthur, legendary Army coach Earl “Red” Blaik and immortal journalist Grantland Rice, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame is a non-profit educational organization that runs programs designed to use the power of amateur football in developing scholarship, citizenship and athletic achievement in young people. With 120 chapters and 12,000 members nationwide, NFF programs include the Chick-fil-A College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta, Future for Football, The William V. Campbell Trophy® Presented by Mazda, the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Class Presented by Fidelity Investments and a series of initiatives to honor the legends of the past and inspire the leaders of the future. NFF corporate partners include Delta Air Lines, Fidelity Investments, Goodyear, Jostens, Mazda, the New York Athletic Club, the Pasadena Tournament of Roses and the Sports Business Journal. Follow us on FacebookInstagram and Twitter @NFFNetwork and learn more at footballfoundation.org.

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