Former Ohio State Linebacker Randy Gradishar Selected to 2024 Pro Football Hall of Fame Class

By Dan Hope on February 8, 2024 at 10:10 pm
Randy Gradishar
Manny Rubio – USA TODAY Sports

Randy Gradishar’s long wait to become a Pro Football Hall of Famer is officially over.

The former Ohio State linebacker and Denver Broncos star was officially named a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame’s class of 2024 on Thursday.

Long considered to be one of the best players not enshrined in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Gradishar was voted into the Hall of Fame this year after being selected as one of three senior finalists for this year’s class.

Gradishar played for the Denver Broncos from 1974-83, making the Pro Bowl in seven of his 10 NFL seasons. A two-time first-team All-Pro, Gradishar was named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year in 1978. He unofficially recorded a whopping 2,049 tackles – second-most in league history – across his 10 NFL seasons, in which he officially recorded 20 interceptions, 13 fumble recoveries and four defensive touchdowns.

A native of Warren, Ohio, Gradishar becomes the 11th member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame from Ohio State, joining Cris Carter, Sid Gillman, Lou Groza, Dante Lavelli, Dick LeBeau, Orlando Pace, Jim Parker, Ed Sabol, Paul Warfield and Bill Willis.

Ohio State is now tied with Michigan for the third-most Pro Football Hall of Famers all-time. Notre Dame and USC are tied for the most Hall of Famers with 14 each.

Gradishar is the fourth Buckeye to be inducted in both the Pro and College Football Halls of Fame, joining Pace, Parker and Willis.

Before becoming the 14th overall pick in the 1974 NFL draft, Gradishar starred at Ohio State, where he recorded 320 total tackles – a school record at the time – over three years. Described by Woody Hayes as the best linebacker he ever coached, Gradishar was a three-time All-Big Ten selection and two-time first-team All-American. Gradishar finished sixth in Heisman Trophy voting in 1973 and was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 1998.

Gradishar and the rest of the 2024 Pro Football Hall of Fame class will be formally inducted into the Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio on Aug. 3.

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