Arizona State University and The National Football Foundation (NFF) & College Football Hall of Fame announced today that they will jointly honor the late Pat Tillman with an NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salute Nov. 13, 2010 as the Sun Devils host Stanford in Tempe.
“It will be an honor for Arizona State University to share this on-campus recognition of Pat Tillman with our community and his family and friends.” says Lisa Love, Vice President for University Athletics at ASU. “Pat, an American hero, is a significant part of our history and we are thrilled to recognize him and his family once again.”
On May 27, the NFF announced that Tillman, an All-American linebacker at ASU from 1994-97, will be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame as a member of the 2010 class. Throughout the football season, each Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I-A) College Football Hall of Fame inductee returns to his school for the special on-field event, where a commemorative plaque is presented to the university for permanent display. Beginning with the Foundation’s inaugural Hall of Fame class in 1951, the On-Campus Salute has served as the first of numerous highlights in the hall of fame experience, giving each inductee one more chance to take the field. Tillman, who was tragically killed while on duty in Afghanistan, will be represented by his wife Marie.
“Pat Tillman is a true American hero and his thrilling accomplishments on the field provide an unmatched example of the leadership qualities forged on the gridiron that he exhibited later in life,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “It will be an honor to travel to Tempe and hear the crowds cheer his name in appreciation of his accomplishments.”
The first-ever Arizona State player to be named Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year, Tillman led the Sun Devils to the 1996 Pac-10 title and a berth in the Rose Bowl. Named team MVP in 1997, the two-time First Team Academic All-Pac10 selection finished his ASU career with 230 career tackles. He was named Sun Bowl MVP in his senior season and has since been inducted into the Sun Bowl Hall of Fame. Tillman was also named the 1997 Sporting News/Honda Scholar Athlete of the Year.
Drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in the 1998 NFL Draft, Tillman spent three seasons in the NFL before enlisting in the U.S. Army after 9/11. Tillman, a U.S. Army Ranger, served tours in Iraqi Freedom (2003) and Operation Enduring Freedom (2004) before he was tragically killed. Following his death, he was awarded a Purple Heart by the U.S. Army and a Silver Star by the U.S. Military. Tillman was posthumously honored with the NFF’s Distinguished American Award in 2006.
The Pat Tillman Foundation was established in his name to promote scholarship, the sprit of community service and supporting veterans, active service members and their dependents. Its signature event, Pat’s Run, attracts over 30,000 participants each year. He is survived by his wife Marie.
Sun Devil players previously inducted into the hall of fame include Michael Haynes (2001), John Jefferson (2002), Randall McDaniel (2008), Ron Pritchard (2003), and Danny White (1998). Hall of Fame coaches with stints at ASU include John Cooper (2008), Dan Devine (1985), and Frank Kush (1995).
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