Predicting the Next Football Players to Enter the Athletics Hall of Fame

By Jeff Beck on June 20, 2014 at 11:20a

Last week, Ohio State announced a 14-member class for the school's Athletics Hall of Fame. Among those honored include Troy Smith and Antoine Winfield.

The nods are well-deserved, but in Winfield's case, it took far longer than is probably warranted for the two-time All-American and Thorpe Award winner. All athletes must wait at least five years for consideration, but for Winfield, the wait ended up being 16 years.

So it got me thinking. If OSU could slow play Antoine Winfield for 16 years, who else is out there waiting to get in? And which players are most likely to hear their names called?

David Boston

Boston’s exclusion is a complete and utter mystery. In fact, he might be the biggest snub on this list.

Boston’s name appears 59 times in the Ohio State football record books. He ranks tops in school history in pass receptions in a game (14), pass receptions in a season (85), pass receptions in a career (191), pass reception yards in a season (1,435), average yards per catch (32.6), receptions per game in a season (7.1), receptions per game in a career (5.2), touchdown receptions in a career (34), most 100+ yard games in a season (9) and most 100+ yards games in a career (14).

Rub your eyes and read that again. That’s Boston at No. 1 in school history in 10 different categories (or, every metric that counts at the wide receiver position). Boston is due.

Joe Germaine

Germaine led the Buckeyes to their first Rose Bowl in 20 years, and is one of the nicer, most gracious players ever produced by Ohio State. But, behind that boyish smile is a stone-cold killer on the football field.

The Rose Bowl win was just the beginning of Germaine’s legacy in Columbus. As a full time starter in 1998, Joe broke 11 school records and was named the Chicago Tribune Silver Football winner as the conference’s best player. In three seasons (most of them as a platoon player with Stanley Jackson) Germaine threw for a phenomenal 6,370 yards and 56 touchdowns.

His 3,330 passing yards in 1998 rank first in the Buckeye record book along with his 230 pass completions in a season. In addition his aforementioned 6,370 career yards are good enough for third all-time. Way to go Joe. Here’s hoping you get the nod next year.

Mike Nugent

If I’m in charge of the Ohio State Athletics Hall of Fame, there’s no chance I’m leaving out the best kicker to ever walk into the ‘Shoe. Do I need to remind you that there were NUGENT for HEISMAN tees printed in Columbus?

Nugent’s 356 career points are the most in school history. His .893 FG percentage in 2002 and his .889 percentage in 2004 rank first and second in a season respectively. His .818 career percentage is also tops in the books.

Last but certainly not least Nugent ranks first in school history in 50+ yard field goals made over the course of a career with eight (out of nine attempts) with five of those makes coming during his 2004 season.

The effort didn’t go unnoticed as Nugent was a consensus first-team All American in 2002 and again as a unanimous pick in 2004 when he won the Lou Groza Award as the nation’s top kicker.

In 2005, Nugent was named Ohio State's Male Athlete of the Year, which, you know, seems like something that would help one get into the HoF.

*Art Schlichter

Yes, there's that gambling thing, but of all the football players on the outside looking in, Schichter's fieldwork may be the most impressive.

He threw for 458 yards (tops in school history) against Florida State in 1981. Is first all-time in passing yards in a career with 7,547, completions in a game (31) and threw for 17 consecutive 100 yard games (tied for first in the record books).

But, there's this, from the Hall of Fame's bylaws:

"Consideration shall also be given for personal conduct in life and personal contributions to the high ideals of intercollegiate athletics."

Art, however great he was on the field, may have to endure life as the Pete Rose of the Ohio State Athletics Hall of Fame.

There are a number of other players the HoF should consider: Michael Jenkins, A.J. Hawk, Shawn Springs, and Chris Wells come to mind. But, in my opinion, Boston, Germaine and Nugent will probably hear their names called next.


Comments Show All Comments

YTOWNBUCKI's picture

I'm still a little confused that Boston still isn't in.  Wayyyy overdue IMO.

Schlichter won't get in any time soon.  He's like the Pete Rose of the OSU HOF.

CJDPHoS Board of Directors

Go get your shine box, Gumar!

+2 HS
Hovenaut's picture

Schlicter's off-field issues are well-known, but what about Boston?

He's been MIA since leaving pro football, didn't he have some legal issues as well (too lazy to look up, Remy is quite a ways away from his write-up on #9)?

If I had to choose between Germaine and the Nuge, damn this one is tough, I have to go with Joe Cool. I waited years for that Rose Bowl win.

Sorry, Coach Tressel.

+2 HS
jBarnes's picture

Great list, Jeff.  But I cannot buy into Art Schlichter being put into the OSU HoF - that guy has done so many despicable things over the years in support of his gambling disease that he has passed into the realm of the unforgivable.  

“I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.”  ― Douglas Adams  ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

+1 HS
AndyVance's picture

I read Art's autobiography BUSTED a few weeks back - it was a really, really interesting read. And of course since it was published (circa 2009, I think), Schlichter's back in the clink, and probably for quite a long time.

TraSmith4's picture

I love Boston he and Plaxico were the predecessors to today's big fast and freaky receivers. The Ricky Seals Jones kid at A&M plays so much like him it's almost déjà vu. It's unfortunate once he got to the NFL he had injuries and then kind of threw it all away by doing weird shit to his body he could have been legendary. Him and Woodsen going after it will be replayed every November for years to come. 

-1 HS
MikeNugents BigToe's picture

Mike Nugent, always finding a way to kick down the door that leads to your heart.... See what I did there? #NugeForHeisman

"Remember that 55 yarder against Marshall?" -Not Mike Nugent

+2 HS
prdoctor's picture

Yeah, "off-field issues" are one thing, but Art's a sociopath. There's no comparison between what he's done and the run-of-the-mill knuckleheadery of most others.

+1 HS
1MechEng's picture

I find it interesting that Bobby Hoying is in, but neither Krenzel nor Herbstreit is.

Other possible choices:

"Big Daddy" Dan Wilkinson

Joey Galloway

LeCharles Bentley

Shawn Springs

Terry Glenn

TobyMagic's picture

From the top photo: I remember, as a child, watching C Woodson score 7 TDs against my HS team. How did we let him slip through.. Anyone know about his recruitment? Was he highly rated? OSU offer him?

luckynutz's picture

That was during the cooper years. During which TSUN had free reign to recruit Ohio. Coop was the OG of recruiting nationally at Ohio State. Coop was notorious for signing unbelievable classes with no regard for the home grown talent. Tress put the fence back up, and meyer has done a pretty admirable job of straddling the line between homegrown and national recruiting.

+1 HS
EvanstonBuckeye's picture

Pretty damn good analysis right there.

cdub4's picture

He was Ohio Mr. Football, I remember his recruitment. He was offered and probably considered the best player in Ohio. He ran for like 2000+ his senior year. He had little interest in OSU. He had offers from everyone.

NorthernOhioBuckeye's picture

I don't remember much about his recruitment, but I officiated one of his HS games his senior year, and god he was an ASS. He was a great player and he knew it. He seemed the perfect fit for tsun. I also did a Sandusky HS game that year with O.Pace. He was a complete opposite of Woodson, very humble and plesant to be around.  Oh yea, and he could block. He OWNED the his side of the line.

+1 HS
gbdawg's picture

Schlichter Doesn't belong in the HOF (and he went to my HS)

+1 HS
jamesrbrown322's picture

Might the steroids issue be affecting Boston's admission?

With Nuge, don't forget that early on in 2004, Trev Alberts, yes THAT Trev Alberts, even had Nugent on his Heisman list.

"Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." - Winston Churchill

VintonCountyBuck's picture

I love Buckeye football.  And, while I think those players are all deserving, If any of them get into the Ohio State Athletic Hall of Fame before Logan Stieber, it will be a travesty.

“Right now, Michigan is not at the pinnacle of college football, and that’s all Urban Meyer cares about...He’s been there and knows what it takes to get there.” 

+1 HS
1MechEng's picture

I like the thought, but Stieber needs to wait at least 5 years following his classes' expected graduation date to be eligible.

+1 HS
Jason Priestas's picture

Stieber is great, but he won't even be eligible until 2020. 

VintonCountyBuck's picture

Damnit Jason!


“Right now, Michigan is not at the pinnacle of college football, and that’s all Urban Meyer cares about...He’s been there and knows what it takes to get there.” 

NorthernOhioBuckeye's picture

To me, AJ Hawk should be a no brainer. He was the most instinctive linebacker I'd seen since Spielman. There was a play in the bowl game against ND where just before the snap, he took off from his LB position and sprinted towards the sideline. Just he got there, the ball was snapped and they threw a screen pass that way and AJ was there to blow it up. I loved watched the Bucks then JUST to watch AJ. I now tune into GB Packer games sometimes just for the memories.


+2 HS
FitzBuck's picture

WTF - Boston and Nuge need to be in ASAP.  

Had no idea and can't believe this is true.  

Fitzbuck | Toledo - Ohio's right armpit | "A troll by any other name is still a troll".

+1 HS
Crumb's picture

I just have to say that picture of Boston taunting Woodson was my favorite play ever from a loss.

"The only good thing about it is winning the d*** thing" - Urban Meyer on The Game The War

DC-town's picture

Something that seems glossed did Winfield have to wait 16 yrs?  I know we have some all time greats, but that dude set the standard for 'Corner U', smaller, mean would hit and cover- 

'Piss excellence' -RB

Buckeye Chuck's picture

It might just be a matter of Winfield always having had a professional game the weekend of the HoF induction.

The most "loud mouth, disrespect" poster on 11W.

+1 HS
nm_buck's picture

Nuge is the MAN.

Schlichter... you were fun to watch as a Buckeye but since then you've been a real douchenozzle.  What a waste of good talent.

"The future is bright at Ohio State."  - Urban Meyer 1/1/15

BuckeyeJAK's picture

Yes on all except Art  nuf said

Mark May is a mental midget