Chris Spielman became the 28th Ohio State player or coach to be elected to the College Football Hall of Fame. Spielman was one of 16 players and coaches inducted in this year's Hall of Fame class.
Chris Spielman was one of the greatest linebackers ever to play college football, no check that – football. If I were a football coach and I lived in a time where cloning was a possibility, I would clone Chris Spielman a couple times and have myself an amazing trio of linebackers.
Chris came from an outstanding high school with a storied football program, Massillion Washington High school in Canton, Ohio.
Spielman was a high school legend while at Massillion Washington, he even had his picture on a Wheaties cereal box.
While a member of the Ohio State Buckeye football team from 1984-87, he was a two-time All-American, three-time All-Big Ten, 1987 Lombardi winner, and holds the Ohio State record for solo tackles in a season with 105 (1986) and the record for solo tackles in a career with 283. He also holds an amazing record for most tackles in a game with 29 against his hated rival Michigan in 1986.
Spielman was named the top defensive player in the 1987 Cotton Bowl. He had 11 tackles, two INT's, and an INT return for a 24-yard touchdown.
Spielman finished his prolific defensive career at OSU with 546 tackles, eight sacks and 11 interceptions.
The Detroit Lions drafted Spielman in the second round of the 1988 NFL draft and he played 10 seasons in the NFL for the Lions (eight years) and the Buffalo Bills (two years). Spielman led the Lions in tackles for eight straight years (only player ever to do that).
Spielman made the Pro-Bowl 4 times (1989, '90, '91, '94).
In eight seasons with the Detroit Lions he never missed a game (114 consecutive game streak ended in 1997). He became the first Lion player ever to register 1,000 career tackles.
The Ohio State University has had an inductee into the college football hall of fame seven of the past nine years. The other recent honorees are John Hicks (2001), Coach Earle Bruce (2002), Jack Tatum (2004), Jim Houston (2005), Rex Kern (2007), and Coach John Cooper (2008).
Spielman's coach while at OSU and fellow hall of fame inductee Earle Bruce said of Spielman: "He epitomizes a football player. He loves the game of football, no doubt about that. He was dedicated to playing hard, he was tough and he liked the game. He displayed it every Friday night or Saturday afternoon."
Spielman's class will be honored at a banquet in New York in December, then officially inducted in a ceremony at the hall of fame in South Bend, Ind., in the summer of 2010.
Spielman said of his honor, "I remember talking to coach Cooper last year, and how excited he was, now I get it. It validates you, that you did something the right way. Even though you knew that in your heart, to have other people feel that is cool."
My son is three years old right now, I can promise you when he grows up and if he shows interest in playing football, and he happens to play linebacker, I will pop in some old tape of Chris Spielman and tell him that is how the game of football is suppose to be played.
Congratulations Chris, nobody deserves it more than you.