On Wednesday night the NFL announced the 25 semifinalists for its next class of Pro Football Hall of Fame members. Former Colts Marvin Harrison (WR, 1996-2008) and Tony Dungy (HC, 2002-2008) are two of the four first-year eligible candidates to make the list, which was cut from 126 to 25.
Harrison and Dungy won Super Bowl XLI together in Indianapolis, a magical year for the team, but their accolades while in the city go far beyond that single title. Harrison led the NFL in receptions and receiving yards a total of four times and was an eight-time Pro Bowl selection as a Colt. He made the NFL’s 2000 All Decades Team and was inducted into the Colts’ Ring of Honor in 2011. He also ranks third all-time in the NFL in career receptions. Dungy made that same 2000 All Decades Team and was named to the Colts’ Ring of Honor a year before Harrison. He was the first African American head coach to win a Super Bowl, and he was also the first head coach of any race to defeat all 32 NFL teams. Dungy is also known as the “Conscience of the NFL” for his support and mentoring of troubled NFL players, including Michael Vick.
Harrison and Dungy will now be evaluated again with the other candidates, and the list of finalists will be reduced to 15 in the coming weeks. The final Hall of Fame election will take place the eve of Super Bowl XLVIII, February 1st.
Of course, Colts fans will be rooting for Harrison and Dungy to be inducted this year, but even if they are not, it is not a matter of “if” but a matter of “when” these two Indy legends are permanently enshrined in Canton for their memorable and momentous contributions to the NFL.
The full list of 25 semifinalists are as follows:
Edward DeBartolo, Jr.