College Football Hall of Fame: Players featured on 2025 ballot deserving of long-overdue induction



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The National Football Foundation recently announced the ballot for the 2025 College Football Hall of Fame class, with 77 players from the FBS ranks up for consideration. Urban Meyer and Nick Saban also made the cut in their first year of eligibility and are among nine coaches up for consideration from voters.

Of those players up for selection, only 12 will make it into the Hall of Fame this year. Voters face tough choices on a loaded ballot that includes legendary figures like Michael Vick, Sean Taylor and Aaron Donald.

Outside of the obvious standouts, there are plenty of players who don’t garner as much recognition. Some have lingered on the ballot for several years despite standout careers filled with achievements that warrant more than just a placeholder spot on the annual press release. 

There’s a case to be made for several “fringe” players after years of waiting their turn. Here’s a look at eight former college football stars on the ballot that deserve a spot in the College Football Hall of Fame

Kellen Moore, QB, Boise State 

Moore is on the ballot for a fourth straight year. Wins aren’t a stat easily attributed to one single player, but it’s hard to ignore that Moore is the winningest quarterback in college football history. His 50-3 record as a starter with the Broncos is astounding. He’s synonymous with the height of the program’s Golden Era under Chris Petersen. A Heisman Trophy finalist in 2010, Moore also finished his career ranked second in NCAA history in touchdown passes (142) and fifth in yards passing (14,667). 

Antwaan Randle El, QB, Indiana 

From one undervalued quarterback to another, Randle El has been waiting patiently on the ballot since the moment he became eligible in 2012. That’s a shame for a player that helped redefine how we view the quarterback position. As both an elite passer and rushing threat, Randle El was the first player in NCAA Division I history to pass for 40 and rush for 40 touchdowns. He also became the first player in college football history to reach 2,500 total yards in four consecutive years. It’s a testament to his versatility and athleticism that he moved to wide receiver in the NFL and earned 2005 first-team All-Pro honors.

Eric Weddle, DB, Utah 

This is Weddle’s third straight year on the ballot. This time he’s joined by Meyer, who went 22-2 while leading the Utes from 2003-04. Weddle was a huge part of that early success, with both his leadership and impact on the field. He started nine games at cornerback as a freshman in 2003 and didn’t look back, holding down various spots in Utah’s secondary through 2006. He was a two-time Mountain West Conference Defensive Player of the Year and a 2006 consensus All-American after a senior season in which he logged 64 tackles, one sack, two pass deflections and seven interceptions. His 18 career interceptions are the most in MWC history and he holds the Utah record with nine forced fumbles. Weddle was a difference maker in every sense of the term and always delivered.

Haloti Ngata, DL, Oregon 

Ngata is one of the most dominant defensive linemen in college football history. He tore his ACL as a freshman in 2003 and bounced back a year later to earn second-team All-Pac-10 honors. He took it to another level in 2005, bulldozing his way to a Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year nod and emerging as Oregon’s first consensus All-American in 43 years. His nine tackles for loss and three sacks as a junior display his disruptive traits from the interior. Ngata also owned the game in ways that don’t show up on the stat sheet by plugging running lanes and demanding double teams to try and slow him down. This is Ngata’s third year on the ballot. It should be his last, with enshrinement soon to follow. 

Montee Ball, RB, Wisconsin 

Ball had 39 touchdowns in a single season. Thirty. Nine. That tied an FBS record held by none other than Barry Sanders. Ball also surpassed 2,229 total yards in that 2011 season which saw him finish as a finalist for the Heisman Trophy. He followed that up as a senior with a measly 22 touchdowns rushing, earning a second straight consensus All-American selection and the Doak Walker Award, given annually to college football’s best running back. Ball’s 77 career rushing touchdowns and 83 total touchdowns both set FBS records and he also holds the NCAA record after finishing 13 consecutive games with at least two touchdowns. 

Peter Warrick, WR, Florida State 

Warrick was a runaway favorite to win the Heisman Trophy in 1999 before a midseason arrest on what devolved into a misdemeanor resulted in a two-game suspension. Warwick still finished the year with 934 yards receiving and 11 total touchdowns and was named the MVP in a 2000 Sugar Bowl game that gave Florida State its second national championship in program history. That was after a 1998 season in which Warrick easily exceeded 1,000 yards receiving and hauled in 12 touchdown catches. Warrick also starred as a punt returner with the Seminoles. He was a maestro with the ball in his hands that could turn an inch of space into a breakaway touchdown by dancing around defenders. And he was, undoubtedly, one of the best players of the legendary Bobby Bowden era. 

Ki-Jana Carter, RB, Penn State 

Even on Penn State teams loaded with NFL talent and an offense that consistently ranked among the nation’s best in multiple areas, Carter found a way to stand out. He burst onto the scene as a sophomore in 1993 and rushed for 1,026 yards and seven touchdowns in 11 games. He finished second in 1994 Heisman Trophy voting with 1,539 yards rushing and 23 touchdowns. He was also co-MVP of that year’s Rose Bowl after rushing for 156 yards and three touchdowns, putting a bow on Penn State’s last undefeated season. He cut his college career short to pursue professional dreams and is still the last running back to be selected No. 1 overall in the NFL Draft. 

Simeon Rice, EDGE, Illinois 

Rice has a strong case for both the College Football and Pro Football Hall of Fame, evidence of the nigh-unstoppable force he was on a football field. Rice set an Illinois record with nine sacks as a freshman and was named Big Ten Rookie of the Year. His 44.5 career sacks is a conference record that still stands almost three decades later, despite the modern proliferation of elite edge rushers. Rice was a three-time first-team All-Big Ten selection, the 1994 Big Ten Defensive Lineman of the Year and a consecutive first-team All-American from 1994-95. He was a rare defender that would have garnered Heisman consideration, if not for the fact that he played on some lackluster Illinois teams. 





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