Dave Butz elected to College Football Hall of Fame

Photo Courtesy: Purdue Sports
Photo Courtesy: Purdue Sports

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (Purdue Sports) – Former Purdue All-America defensive tackle Dave Butz has been elected to the College Football Hall of Fame.

The Football Bowl Subdivision Class of 2014 was announced today in Irving, Texas, and includes 14 players and two coaches. The class was chosen from a national ballot of 75 All-America players and six elite coaches from the Football Bowl Subdivision and 87 players and 26 coaches from the divisional ranks.

Butz, who played for head coach Bob DeMoss from 1970 to 1972, is the 15th Boilermaker (10 players and five coaches) to be chosen for college football’s ultimate shrine. Butz is the fourth Purdue player to be elected in the last nine years, following quarterback Mike Phipps in 2006, quarterback Mark Herrmann in 2010 and halfback Otis Armstrong in 2012.

Butz and Armstrong were teammates at Purdue.

“This is indeed a great honor,” Butz said. “There are a lot of great ball players in the College Football Hall of Fame, and I am very pleased to be a part of it. I had an outstanding group of teammates at Purdue, and I’m very happy to represent them and the university.”

Over the course of his collegiate career, the 6-foot-7, 280-pound Butz became widely regarded as the best defensive lineman in the country. He was a consensus All-American as a senior, the recipient of the Zipp Award as college football’s outstanding player and a finalist for the Lombardi Award (presented to the best lineman or linebacker). His career statistics included 108 tackles, 21 tackles for loss and eight pass breakups. Butz was named Defensive Most Valuable Player of the Senior Bowl and also played in the East-West Shrine Game. In 1987, Butz was chosen to Purdue’s All-Time Team spanning its first 100 years of football, and he was inducted into the Purdue Intercollegiate Athletics Hall of Fame in 2004. He is enshrined in the Senior Bowl Hall of Fame, as well.

Selected by the St. Louis Cardinals in the first round (No. 5 overall) of the 1973 NFL Draft, Butz enjoyed a 16-year professional career with the Cardinals (1973-74) and Washington Redskins (1975-88). He was named to the 1973 NFL All-Rookie team. Subsequently, Washington gave St. Louis two No. 1 draft picks and a No. 2 pick, in what is considered to be the largest compensation package in league history, in order to sign him.

Butz earned the reputation as the NFL’s ironman, missing merely four games over the course of his career that included 216 contests. The two-time team captain ranks third in Redskins’ history with 59.5 career sacks. Butz was named NFL Defensive Player of the Year and was selected to the Pro Bowl after recording a career-high 11 sacks in 1983. He was an alternate to the Pro Bowl in 1981 and 1984 and was selected to the NFL 1980s All-Decade Team. When he announced his retirement at the age of 38, he was the oldest active starter in the NFL.

Butz played in three Super Bowls with Washington: XVII (a 27-17 win over the Miami Dolphins), XVIII (a 38-9 loss to the Oakland Raiders) and XXII (a 42-10 win over the Denver Broncos).

Born in Lafayette, Ala., and raised in Park Ridge, Ill., Butz now makes his home in Swansea, Ill. He has three children: David II, Kiffin, and Jason. He is the nephew of the late Earl Butz, former United States Secretary of Agriculture and Purdue professor and dean. Following his playing career, Dave spent several years in real estate, worked for a successful sales and service company, and served as a consultant and board member for the National Rifle Association.

Butz supports a wide array of civic, social, educational, health-related and religious activities, many geared to help young people. He has worked with various boys’ clubs and the Boy Scouts of America and supported fundraising projects for Children’s Hospital and the Ronald McDonald House in Washington, D.C. In addition, he has attended the No Greater Love annual Christmas parties for children of POWs and MIAs, once serving as an oversized Santa Claus. His work benefits the Lions, Kiwanis and Rotary Clubs; American Cancer Society; American Heart Association; Arc; Easter Seals; March of Dimes; Muscular Dystrophy Association; Multiple Sclerosis Society; Special Olympics; United Cerebral Palsy; and the YMCA. He has spoken on health issues at the National Institutes of Health and served as an honorary member of the Board of Trustees of the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases.

“We are excited for Dave and look forward to his upcoming induction into the College Football Hall of Fame,” said Bart Burrell, president of the National Football Foundation’s Joe Tiller Chapter of Northwest Indiana. “We also are thrilled to know that all the hard work of starting and sustaining our NFF chapter is accomplishing what we had hoped it would do, getting more former players into the Hall of Fame. Dave is our fourth inductee in a period of just nine years after Purdue had gone 16 years between inductees. So, I say thanks to all those NFF members who are helping us catch up in recognizing our greatest players. This is a great accomplishment for Dave Butz and all Boilermakers.”

The Joe Tiller Chapter of Northwest Indiana is the fourth-largest among 120 chapters nationwide.

The Class of 2014 will be inducted at the 57th NFF Annual Awards Dinner on Dec. 9 at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City. The inductees also will be honored at the National Hall of Fame Salute at the Allstate Sugar Bowl in New Orleans on Jan. 1, 2015. Their accomplishments will be immortalized forever in the new $66.5 million College Football Hall of Fame, currently under construction in Atlanta and scheduled to open in August of 2014.

For the first time in the history of the organization, the NFF combined the inductees from the Football Bowl Subdivision, Football Championship Subdivision, Division II, Division III and NAIA into one class. Of the 4.99 million individuals who have played or coached college football over the past 145 years, only 934 players and 205 coaches have been immortalized in the Hall of Fame. In other words, only two ten-thousandths of one percent (.0002) of those who have been involved in the game have been deemed worthy of the honor.

One other former Boilermaker, wide receiver Larry Burton (1973-74), was on the ballot.

College Football Hall of Fame Class of 2014:

Dre Bly, DB, North Carolina, 1996-98

Tony Boselli, OT, USC, 1991-94

Dave Butz, DT, Purdue, 1970-72

Shane Conlan, LB, Penn State, 1983-86

Joe Hamilton, QB, Georgia Tech, 1996-99

John Huard, LB, Maine, 1964-66

Darrin Nelson, HB, Stanford, 1977-78, 1980-81

Willie Roaf, OL, Louisiana Tech, 1990-92

John Sciarra, QB, UCLA, 1972-75

Sterling Sharpe, WR, South Carolina, 1983, 1985-87

Leonard Smith, CB, McNeese State, 1979-82

Derrick Thomas, LB, Alabama, 1985-88

LaDainian Tomlinson, TB, TCU, 1997-2000

Wesley Walls, TE, Mississippi, 1985-88

Mike Bellotti, Coach, Chico State (Calif.), 1984-88; Oregon, 1995-2008

Jerry Moore, Coach, North Texas, 1979-80; Texas Tech, 1981-85, Appalachian State, 1989-2012

Purdue College Football Hall of Famers:

Name, Position At Purdue, Years Lettered, CFHOF Induction

Elmer Oliphant, HB 1911-13, 1955

Alex Agase, OL 1943, 1963

Cecil Isbell, HB 1935-37, 1967

Bob Griese, QB 1964-66, 1984

Chalmers “Bump” Elliott, HB 1943-44, 1989

Leroy Keyes, HB 1966-68, 1990

Mike Phipps, QB 1967-69, 2006

Mark Herrmann, QB 1977-80, 2010

Otis Armstrong, HB 1970-72, 2012

Dave Butz, DT 1970-72, 2014

Coach at Purdue:

Andy Smith 1913-15, 1951

Jim Phelan 1922-29, 1973

Jack Mollenkopf 1956-69, 1988

Jim Young 1977-81, 1999

William “Lone Star” Dietz 1921, 2012

WLFI.com provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language, off topic, or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others and keep the conversation on topic and civil. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s