Four HBCU legends are among the 94 modern era nominees for the Pro Football Hall of Fame, the NFL announced on Wednesday.
Steve McNair, Alcorn State
McNair starred at Alcorn State, earning Heisman votes despite competing at the Division I-AA level as a senior back in 1994. He would go on to be drafted by the Houston Oilers third overall in the 1995 NFL Draft and go on to complete the best overall career of any quarterback to come from an HBCU. The 2003 co-NFL MVP completed 60 percent of his passes for 31,304 yards and threw 174 touchdowns against 119 interceptions.
Jimmy Smith, Jackson State
Smith played his college football at Jackson State, where he was a standout reciever in the SWAC. He was selected 36th overall by the Dallas Cowboys in 1992, but made a name for himself with the Jacksonville Jaguars. He finished his career with 862 catches for 12,287 yards and 67 touchdowns.
Everson Walls, Grambling
Grambling already has four players in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, and Walls could become the fifth. He went from an undrafted free agent to a four-time Pro Bowler, and twice led the NFL in interceptions. He picked of 57 passes ion 186 games.
Nate Newton, Florida A&M
Newton will be looking to join former FAMU and Dallas Cowboys legend Bob Hayes in the Pro Football Hall of Fame. One of the top guards in the NFL during his prime, Newton protected Troy Aikman and helped open holes for Emmitt Smith. The six-time Pro Bowler also won three Super Bowls.