The No-Brainer Hall Of Famers (sort of)
Wisconsin RB Ron Dayne
Wisconsin RB Ron Dayne
Posted Mar 8, 2013

Who are the most worthy candidates on the 2013 Hall of Fame ballot?

2013 Hall of Fame Ballot

Ranking the Legends

2013 Hall of Fame Ballot Rankings
- Slam Dunk Hall of Famers | The Coaches 
- Hall of Worthy, But Not Quite | Hall of Maybe | Hall of the Very Good

By Pete Fiutak
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The National Football Foundation (NFF) announced the names of the players and coaches who comprise the 2013 Football Bowl Subdivision Ballot for induction into the College Football Hall of Fame.

So who really deserves to be in the Hall?

The massive list of nominees from the NFF is always interesting, and sometimes a bit puzzling, and even more strange is how some players aren't automatic slam dunks.

I believe in the Danny Ocean to Linus Caldwell approach to the Hall of Fame. Either you're in or you're out. Right now.

A Hall of Famer should be obvious, and it's not just about name recognition. A player's popularity doesn't mean he had all-timer of an impact on the sport or was one of the true greats. Perspective is needed, eras and systems have to be considered, and there should be some test of time. NFL production shouldn't factor into the equation in any way, shape or form – this is the COLLEGE Football Hall of Fame – and other factors shouldn't matter at all. Being worthy of the Hall should only be about what happened on the field during that players' career.

But really, Tommie Frazier, Orlando Pace and Brian Bosworth aren't in yet?

With that in mind, here's a ranking of all player nominees and coaches based on how much they deserve to be in the Hall. A few things to keep in mind before going forward …

1. To set the dial to hypocrite, I might be a champion against performance enhancing drugs, and it's my career dream to get the smoking gun needed to finally expose a few programs just begging to get tagged, but I'm letting it go when it comes to the Hall of Fame rankings. Bosworth was one of the greatest college football players in the history of the game, and to not put him in the Hall because of his admitted steroid abuse, considering the era he played in, is like handing out speeding tickets at the Daytona 500. But no, I won't argue if you take the other side.

2. I know I'm supposed to care if a player was a NFF Scholar-Athlete, but I don't. Dave Foley was a great offensive lineman for Ohio State in the late 1960s, but being a three-time Academic All-American doesn't mean much in my Hall world.

3. Win a Heisman, get in the Hall. That should be an automatic.

4. I don't care if a player was given cars, cash, chicks, or all of the above. Police this and you don't have a College Football Hall of Fame.

5. If you have to make a case why a player deserves to be in the Hall of Fame, he probably doesn't deserve to be in. However, I've gotten into debates about why Ted Brown might be the greatest ACC running back of all-time.

Hall of Famers. No Debate.

Among the greatest players in college football history, or at the very least, are special enough to be in the Hall of Fame without question.

All player write-ups taken from the National Football Foundation at

25. Darrin Nelson, Stanford - Running Back
1981 First Team All-American who was the first player in NCAA history to rush for over 1,000 yards and catch more than 50 passes in one season…Finished career as NCAA's all-time leader in all-purpose yardage (6,885)… Four-time All-Pac-10 pick.

24. William Fuller, North Carolina - Defensive Tackle
Two-time First Team All-American, earning consensus honors in 1983… Holds school record with 57 career TFL and broke Lawrence Taylor's season record with 22 TFL in 1981…Three-time First Team All-ACC pick.

23. LaDainian Tomlinson, TCU - Tailback
2000 Unanimous First Team All-American and 2000 Doak Walker Award winner…1999 WAC Offensive Player of the Year who led TCU to consecutive co-shares of WAC title… Holds 15 school records and is TCU's all-time leading rusher.

22. Rod Shoate, Oklahoma - Linebacker
1973 consensus and 1974 unanimous First Team All-America. . .Finished seventh in the 1974 Heisman Trophy voting and twice named Big Eight Defensive Player of the Year. . .Ranks third in school history with 420 career tackles.
21. Bob Crable, Notre Dame - Linebacker
Two-time consensus First Team All-America in 1980 and 1981… Set ND records for most career tackles (521), most tackles in a season (187), most tackles in a game (26)… Played in 1981 Hula Bowl.

20. Jerome Brown, Miami (Fla.) - Defensive Tackle
1986 Unanimous First Team All-American and finalist for both the Outland and Lombardi trophies as senior…Helped Canes to four consecutive New Year's Day bowl games…Ranks 10th in school history with 21 career sacks.

19. Eric Crouch Nebraska - Quarterback
2001 Heisman, Walter Camp, and Davey O'Brien Award winner who led Huskers to 2001 national title game. . . Holds NCAA record for career rushing TDs by a quarterback (59). . . Led team to 42-9 record and four bowl berths.

18. Percy Snow, Michigan State - Linebacker
1989 unanimous First Team All-America and 1989 Butkus Award winner. . . . Led MSU to 1987 Big Ten title and Rose Bowl win. . . Ranks second all-time in career tackles (473).

17. Jim Otis, Ohio State - Fullback
Named consensus First Team All-America in 1969. . .Member of the 1968 National Championship team. . .Named First Team All-Big Ten conference in 1969 and led the Buckeyes to two conference titles. . .Led the team in rushing three times.

16. Tony Boselli, USC - Offensive Tackle
Two-time First Team All-America in 1992 and 1994 (consensus-1994)… 1994 Outland Trophy finalist…Named top offensive lineman in Pac-10 (1994)… 1994 NFF National Scholar-Athlete.

15. Lorenzo White, Michigan State - Running Back
Two-time First Team All-America, earning unanimous ('85) and consensus ('87) honors. . .Led State to 1987 Big Ten title and Rose Bowl win. . .Led nation in rushing (1985), first MSU player to lead team in rushing four-straight seasons.

14. Tony Franklin, Texas A&M - Plackekicker
Two-time First Team All-America (1976-consensus, '78)…Led A&M to four bowl appearances…Set seven NCAA records, including most 50 yards-plus field goals made (15) and most points scored by a kicker in a career (291).

13. Ted Brown, North Carolina State - Tailback
1978 consensus First Team All-America, helping NC State to three bowl berths ... Only four-year First Team All-ACC pick in league history ... Led team in rushing four-straight years and still holds five school records.

12.Tom Cousineau, Ohio State - Linebacker
Two-time consensus First Team All-American and three-time All-Big Ten performer… Recorded 572 career tackles, ranking second all-time in OSU history… Held nine school records at career's end, still holding six.

11. Raghib Ismail, Notre Dame - Wide Receiver
Two-time First Team All-American earning consensus honors in 1989 and unanimous laurels in 1990. . . Walter Camp Player of the Year and Heisman Trophy runner-up in 1990. . . Led ND to national championship at the Fiesta Bowl and two Orange Bowls.

10. Vinny Testaverde, Miami (Fla.) - Quarterback
Winner of 1986 Heisman, Walter Camp, Maxwell Award, and Davey O'Brien. . . Led Canes to three bowl berths, including 1987 Fiesta Bowl to determine national championship. . . Finished career with 6,058 passing yards and 48 TD passes.

9. Mike Ruth, Boston College-Nose Guard
1985 consensus First Team All-America and Outland Trophy winner. . .Three-time All-East and All-ECAC selection. . .Member of three bowl teams and recorded 344 career tackles, including 29 sacks.

8. Danny Wuerffel, Florida - Quarterback
1996 winner of NFF Campbell Trophy, Heisman, Walter Camp, Maxwell, and consecutive Davey O'Brien awards. . . Two-time SEC Player of the Year who led Gators to 1996 National Championship and four SEC championships.

7. Derrick Thomas, Alabama - Linebacker
1988 unanimous First Team All-America and Butkus award winner ... Led Tide to four consecutive bowl berths, earning 1988 SEC Defensive Player of the Year ... Set SEC record for sacks in a season (27) and finished career with 74 TFL. 

6. Eric Dickerson, SMU - Running Back
Named unanimous First Team All-America and finished third in the Heisman Trophy voting in 1982. . .Twice named SWC Player of the Year, he holds 14 SMU records including career rushing yards (4,450).

5. Tedy Bruschi, Arizona - Defensive End
Two-time First Team All-America (consensus-'94, unanimous-'95). . .Tied the NCAA career record with 52 sacks. . .1995 Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year and three-time First Team All-Pac-10 selection. . .Led Arizona to three bowls.

4. Brian Bosworth, Oklahoma - Linebacker
Two-time consensus First Team All-America pick (1985-86). . .Set school record for tackles in a game (22) and named Butkus Award winner in 1985 and '86. . .Led Sooners to three consecutive Orange Bowls and '85 national championship.

3. Orlando Pace, Ohio State - Offensive Tackle
Two-time unanimous First Team All-American and first player in history to win Lombardi Trophy twice. . . 1996 Outland Trophy winner who led Buckeyes to share of 1996 Big Ten title. . . Did not allow a sack during his last two seasons.

2. Tommie Frazier, Nebraska - Quarterback
1995 consensus First Team All-America and Johnny Unitas award winner ... 1995 Heisman trophy runner-up and Big Eight Offensive Player of the Year ... Led Huskers to back-to-back perfect national championship seasons in 1994 and '95.

1. Ron Dayne, Wisconsin - Running Back
All-time leading rusher in FBS history who won the 1999 Heisman Trophy, Walter Camp, Maxwell and Doak Walker awards…Three-time First Team All-American…First player in college history to rush for more than 7,000 yards in career.

2012 Hall of Fame Ballot Rankings
- Slam Dunk Hall of Famers | The Coaches 
- Hall of Worthy, But Not Quite | Hall of Maybe | Hall of the Very Good