(Pictured above: Florida quarterback Danny Wuerffel claimed the 1996 Campbell Trophy® and was joined at the NFF Annual Awards Dinner that year by Coach Steve Spurrier, a Hall of Fame player and 2017 Hall of Fame electee as a coach. Wuerffel was named as part of the 2017 SEC Football Legends Class.)
The Southeastern Conference announced its 2017 SEC Football Legends Class, a collection of former football standouts who will be honored at events surrounding the SEC Football Championship Game in Atlanta in December.
The 2017 Football Legends Class includes 14 former stars who excelled on the gridiron and helped write the rich history of the sport at their respective institutions. This year’s class includes All-Americans, All-SEC selections and Academic All-Americans. The group represents teams that won National and SEC Championships and are represented in state, school and college football halls of fame.
The Class includes College Football Hall of Fame coach Gene Stallings (Texas A&M, Alabama), Hall of Famer and 1996 Campbell Trophy® winner Danny Wuerffel (Florida), Hall of Famer and 1970 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Dave Elmendorf (Texas A&M) and 2005 NFF National Scholar-Athlete Brad Smith (Missouri). Also in the Class are John Abraham (South Carolina), Champ Bailey (Georgia), Chad Clifton (Tennessee), Glenn Dorsey (LSU), Dan Hampton (Arkansas), Terrence Metcalf (Ole Miss), Nate Northington (Kentucky), Don Orr (Vanderbilt), Carlos Rogers (Auburn) and Floyd “Pork Chop” Womack (Mississippi State).
The class will be honored at the 2017 SEC Football “Weekend of Champions” Dec. 1-2 in Atlanta. The annual SEC Legends Dinner presented by AT&T will be held Fri., Dec. 1 at the Hyatt Regency in Atlanta and the group will also be recognized prior to the SEC Football Championship Game, which will be held at the new Mercedes-Benz Stadium on Sat., Dec. 2.
ALABAMA – Gene Stallings, Head Coach, 1990-96
Gene Stallings served as the head coach at Alabama from 1990-96. He led the Crimson Tide to the National Championship as well as the Southeastern Conference title in 1992, and won four SEC Western Division titles along with five bowl victories and four top-10 final national rankings. Under Stallings’ direction, Alabama posted a 28-game winning streak which spanned the 1991-93 seasons. In 1992, he was the National Coach of the Year, the AFCA Coach of the Year, the Paul Bryant Coach of the Year and the SEC Coach of the Year, an honor he earned twice at Alabama. Overall, Stallings led the Tide to an on-field record of 70-16-1. The legendary coach was enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame as part of the 2010 class. Stallings became the 22nd member of the Alabama family to be inducted in the Hall of Fame. He also coached at Texas A&M from 1965-71, earning a Southwest Conference title in 1967.
FLORIDA – Danny Wuerffel, Quarterback, 1993-96
Florida quarterback Danny Wuerffel was one of the most decorated players in Florida’s football history. A key member of the Gators’ teams that won four consecutive Southeastern Conference titles between 1993 and 1996, Wuerffel graduated from Florida with a bachelor’s degree in public relations and was inducted into the University of Florida Athletic Hall of Fame in 2006. In addition, that same year, he was inducted into the Gator Football Ring of Honor alongside his former coach Steve Spurrier and former Gators Jack Youngblood and Emmitt Smith. A first-team All-American in 1995 and 1996, Wuerffel finished his career with 10,875 passing yards and 114 touchdown passes, which was the best in SEC history and the second-most in major college football history. The 1996 National Champion, Heisman Trophy winner and Campbell Trophy® winner was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame in 2013.
TEXAS A&M – Dave Elmendorf, Defensive Back, 1968-70
Texas A&M defensive back Dave Elmendorf earned All-America honors in football as a defensive back and in baseball as an outfielder, as well as being a CoSIDA Academic All-American and NFF National Scholar-Athlete. Elmendorf was drafted out of high school by the Atlanta Braves, but he chose to attend Texas A&M. He lettered three years in football and earned All-SWC honors twice while earning All-America honors in 1971. Elmendorf started for the Aggie baseball team four years, earning All-SWC honors three times and All-America honors in 1971. He was drafted by the LA Rams in football and the New York Yankees in baseball following his graduation, and chose the NFL. Elmendorf played nine seasons for the Rams and was named to the All-Rookie team in 1971 as a defensive back. He earned All-NFC honors in 1974 and second-team All-Pro in 1975. Elmendorf was named to the College Football Hall of Fame in 1997.
MISSOURI – Brad Smith, Quarterback, 2002-05
Missouri quarterback Brad Smith helped lead the Mizzou program to national prominence in his record-setting quarterback career, as he left holding 69 school, conference and NCAA game, season and career records. Smith became the first player in NCAA Division I-A history to throw for 8,000 yards and rush for 4,000 yards in a career, and he broke the NCAA record for most career rushing yards by a quarterback. He led Mizzou to a pair of bowl games in 2003 and 2005, as well as 25 wins in four years as a starter. Smith was an outstanding student as he was named a finalist for the prestigious Campbell Trophy®, also known as the Academic Heisman, and was named a National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete. He was a fourth-round pick by the New York Jets in the 2006 NFL Draft, and played in 104 games over nine seasons with the Jets, Buffalo Bills and Philadelphia Eagles before retiring after the 2014 season.