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Plenty of Michigan representation on NFF’s 2021 College Football Hall of Fame ballot

By: , June 16, 2020, 3:14 pm

The 2021 ballot for the College Football Hall of Fame was released on Tuesday, and — of the 177 players and 40 coaches — it’s got plenty of Michigan representation. More than 12,000 members of the National Football Foundation and current Hall of Famers will vote, along with the NFF Honors Courts, to select the class, which will be announced in early 2021, and inducted at the NFF’s annual awards dinner in December. 

You can see the full ballot BY CLICKING HERE.

The natives

Mark Messner, Michigan DT — Born in Riverview, grew up in Hartland and attended Detroit Catholic Central before earning unanimous first-team All-American honors at Michigan, along with 1988 Big Ten Player of the Year honors. He played in just four NFL games after being selected in the sixth round of the 1989 draft. 

Pete Mitchell, Boston College TE — Born in Royal Oak, Mitchell attended Birmingham Brother Rice before earning consensus first-team All-American honors as a Boston College senior in 1994. He played 114 games over eight seasons in the NFL, including one with the hometown Detroit Lions. 

William “Dill” Dillon, Virginia Union FS — A graduate of Detroit Mumford, Dillon was a three-time first-team All-American selection, and picked off 16 passes in 1983 to earn Black College Player of the Year honors that season, and was invited to training camp with the Seattle Seahawks. 

EDITOR’S NOTE: Whitworth (WA) defensive end Dave Pomante is from Michigan, but it’s unclear what high school he attended. If you know, please share it with us.

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Collegiate players:

Flozell Adams, Michigan State OT

Morten Andersen, Michigan State PK

Steve Hutchinson, Michigan OL

Jerry Woods, Northern Michigan DB

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Coaches:

Darryl Rogers, Michigan State/Detroit Lions — The head coach in East Lansing from 1976-79, Rogers went 24-18-2 with the Spartans, including a tie for first and a No. 12 AP ranking in 1978. After a five-year stint at Arizona State, he returned to Michigan to pilot the Lions from 1985-88, going 18-40, and never finishing higher than third. He was 129-84-7 in his collegiate coaching career. 

Morley Fraser, Albion College — A graduate of Michigan State, Fraser coached at Newberry High and Lansing Eastern before getting the job at Albion in 1954, and leading to Britons to six titles in the MIAA. 

Roy Kramer, Central Michigan — In nine seasons as a head coach in the high school ranks in Michigan — at Hudson, Dowagiac, Benton Harbor and East Lansing — Roy Kramer won three mythical state titles, then headed to CMU for 10 seasons, where he led the Chippewas to the 1974 NCAA D-II crown. He went on to become the athletic director at Vanderbilt, then of the Southeastern Conference. 

Dick Lowry, Wayne State/Hillsdale — Won 38 games and a GLIAC title at the helm of Wayne State from 1974-79, then took Hillsdale to the NAIA quarterfinals and beyond five times over the next eight seasons — including a 10-10 tie against Central Arkansas in the 1985 title game — winning 134 games and five conference titles in 17 seasons as the Chargers’ head coach. 

Pete Schmidt, Albion College — A graduate of Alma College, Schmidt was the head football coach at Okemos for seven seasons (1974-81), winning six conference titles and recording two Class B runner-up finishes (1976 and 1980), before moving to Albion College for a season as an assistant. He took over as head coach of the Britons in 1983, and posted 104 wins in 14 seasons — including nine MIAA championships, and the 1994 NCAA Division III national title. He spent three seasons as Indiana University’s offensive coordinator under Cam Cameron, but passed away in 2000.