On Monday, former Penn State quarterback Kerry Collins was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame in its 2018 class. Collins will be officially inducted into the Hall of Fame on Dec. 4 in New York City.
In a released statement, Collins said:
“I am extremely honored to be included in the College Football Hall of Fame Class of 2018. I was surrounded by great players and coaches during my time at Penn State, and was fortunate to have been part of an unbelievably talented undefeated 1994 Big Ten Championship team. My years at Penn State were special, and I am eternally grateful for the support and guidance I received there as a student-athlete. I would like to congratulate the other members of this year's class, and to also thank the National Football Foundation for the privilege of joining the long list of Nittany Lions previously inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.”
Collins became the full-time starting quarterback in 1993, taking the reigns for the last nine games and leading Penn State to a Citrus Bowl victory over Tennessee. In 1994, Collins directed one of the most prolific offenses in college football history to a perfect season, capped with a Rose Bowl win over Oregon. In their toughest game of the year against Illinois, the Lions were down by three points with just minutes remaining, Collins led Penn State on a 96-yard drive to remain undefeated.
In 1994, Collins won the Maxwell Award presented to National Player of the Year and the Davey O’Brien award as the nation’s top quarterback. Additionally, he finished fourth in the Heisman Trophy voting while teammate Ki-Jana Carter finished second. For his career, Collins amassed 5,304 yards passing and with 39 touchdowns. Collins was selected fifth overall by the Carolina Panthers in the 1995 draft and had a 17-year career in the NFL. He is currently 17th all-time in career passing yards.
Collins is the 25th Penn State player or coach to be elected to the College Football Hall of Fame, and the first member of the prolific 1994 team — it is simply a matter of time before Carter and other '94 teammates get the call. Collins is the first Penn State player elected since Shane Conlan in 2014.
Here is a look at the entire 2018 Class:
- Trevor Cobb – RB, Rice (1989-92)
- Kerry Collins – QB, Penn State (1991-94)
- Dave Dickkenson – QB, Montana (1992-95)
- Dana Howard – LB, Illinois (1991-94)
- Calvin Johnson – WR, Georgia Tech (2004-06)
- Paul Palmer – RB, Temple (1983-86)
- Ed Reed – DB, Miami [Fla.] (1998-2001)
- Matt Stinchcomb – OT, Georgia (1995-98)
- Aaron Taylor – C/OG, Nebraska (1994-97)
- Charles Woodson – DB, Michigan (1995-97)
- Frank Beamer
- Mack Brown
- Mel Tjeerdsma