2016 HONOREES

Council Rudolph  ◊ Tampa Bay          Myron Guyton ◊ New York

         Warren Bryant ◊ Atlanta     Ray Buchanan ◊ Atlanta        

Blanton Collier  ◊  Cleveland Browns   

Dermontti Dawson   ◊   Pittsburgh

 

 


 

Dawson was selected by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the second round of the 1988 NFL Draft.[1] In his rookie season he played guard alongside Hall of Fame center Mike Webster. When Webster left the team following that season, Dawson succeeded him as the starting center. He soon became one of the most respected players among the Steelers, and one of the best in the league at his position. He earned the name “Dirt” for the way he would try to grind defenders into the ground.[2] In contrast, his friendly off-field demeanor led to a second nickname, Ned Flanders, after the annoyingly cheerful character from The Simpsons.[6]

Dawson was named to seven straight Pro Bowls from 1992 to 1998 and was a six-time AP First Team All-Pro. In 1993, he was named co-AFC Offensive Lineman of the Year by the NFLPA and in 1996 he was named the NFL Alumni’s Offensive Lineman of the Year. He played in 170 consecutive games, the second most in Steelers history, until severe hamstring injuries forced him to sit out nine games in 1999 and seven more games in 2000. Dawson was released by the Steelers following the 2000 season partly due to these injuries and partly due to salary cap reasons. He opted to retire rather than trying to play for another team.

Blanton Collier was an American football head coach who coached the University of Kentucky between 1954 and 1961 and the Cleveland Browns in the National Football League (NFL) between 1963 and 1970. His 1964 Browns team won the NFL championship and remains the most recent Cleveland team to win a professional sports title. Collier was born in Millersburg, Kentucky to O.H. and Eva (née Long) Collier. He grew up in Paris, KY where he attended Paris High School in Paris, Kentucky, where he played football and basketball. He worked as a tobacco-picker in the summers during high school. After graduating, he enrolled at Kentucky’s Georgetown College, playing on the school’s football team and earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1927. After graduating from Georgetown College, he returned to his old high school to teach and coach sports for 16 years. Collier left the position to join the U.S. Navy in 1943 during World War II. At a naval base outside of Chicago he met Paul Brown, who was coaching a service football team there. After the war, Brown hired Collier as an assistant coach for the Browns, a team under formation in the All-America Football Conference (AAFC). After seven years as Brown’s top aide, a span over which the Cleveland team won five league championships, Collier took a job as head football coach at the University of Kentucky in 1954. His Kentucky Wildcats teams amassed a 41–36–3 win-loss-tie record over eight seasons. Several future star coaches served as assistants under Collier at Kentucky, including Don Shula, Chuck Knox, Howard Schnellenberger and Bill Arnsparger. Standout players under Collier included All-Americans Lou Michaels and Schnellenberger. Collier returned to the Cleveland Browns in 1962 and became the team’s head coach from 1963-1970 where he led them to a championship in 1964. During his tenure as coach, he was the NFL Champion in 1950 & 1964, AAFC Champion 1947 & 1948, and SEC Coach of the Year 1954. He is known for the quote: “You can accomplish anything you want as long as you don’t care who gets the credit.”

 

Born September 29, 1971. Ray is a former American football player in the NFL. He was drafted out of Louisville in 1993 by the Indianapolis Colts in the 3rd round (65th overall), and subsequently played for the Atlanta Falcons and the Oakland Raiders. He played in the NFL from 1993-2004. He was a Pro Bowl selection in 1998 and a 2 x All-Pro selection in 1994 and 1998. He had 819 tackles, 47 interceptions and 4 touchdowns.

Known to Louisville fans as “Big Play” Ray, Buchanan began his college career at the University of Louisville in 1989. After being moved from wide receiver to defensive back, Buchanan compiled an epic career at Louisville, earning two Collegiate All-American honors. Buchanan jumped on the scene as a sophomore in 1990, piling up 59 tackles and three interceptions in helping the Cardinals to the 1990 Sunkist Fiesta Bowl. He then made his mark on the national stage as the Defensive MVP of the 1991 Fiesta Bowl with five tackles, a fumble recovery and a recovery of a blocked punt in the end zone as Louisville drilled Alabama 34-7. In 1991, he compiled 108 tackles and set the then-single season record for interceptions with eight picks.

In the 1992 NFL draft, the Indianapolis Colts took Buchanan in the 3rd round. He would then embark on a stellar professional career where he is considered one of the top cornerbacks in the NFL. Buchanan would help lead the Colts to the NFC Championship game in 1996 before being traded to the Atlanta Falcons. He then put together five consecutive seasons of five or more interceptions while helping lead the “Dirty Birds” to Super Bowl XXXIII in 1999.

Born November 11, 1955, in Miami, Florida. A former American football offensive lineman from 1977 through 1984 in the National Football League. He played college football at the University of Kentucky. Warren was drafted in the first round as the 6th pick in 1977. He played for the Atlanta Falcons from 1977-1984 then for the Los Angeles Raiders in 1984.

He is a 2005 SEC Legend. Bryant, who lettered from 1974-76 as an offensive tackle for UK, was a first-team All-American by the Walter Camp and American Football Coaches Association in 1976. The star offensive lineman, whose jersey is retired at UK, was also winner of the Jacobs Trophy in 1976, which honors the SEC’s most outstanding blocker. Bryant was a three-time All-SEC selection and was named to the Lakeland (Fla.) Ledger 25-year (1961-1985) All-SEC team. A first-round draft choice by the Atlanta Falcons in 1976, Bryant played in 104 career games in the NFL with the Falcons and the Los Angeles Raiders until his NFL career ended in 1984.

Born August 26, 1967. Myron played professionally as a defensive back in the National Football League (NFL) for the New York Giants (1989–1993) and the New England Patriots (1994–1995). He was a member of the Giants team that won Super Bowl XXV. He participated in 7 playoff games. Before his NFL career, he played college football at Eastern Kentucky University and was selected by the Giants in the eighth round of the 1989 NFL Draft. Guyton is a member of Phi Beta Sigma fraternity, Iota Delta chapter of Eastern Kentucky University. He was inducted into the EKU Hall of Fame in 2007. One of only two rookies to start for Bill Parcells (Lawrence Taylor being the other), Guyton led the NFL’s second-ranked defense in tackles during his rookie campaign. In his second year with the organization, Guyton was an instrumental part of the Super Bowl championship. After five years with the Giants, Myron completed his career by playing two seasons with the New England Patriots. In 98 professional football games, Guyton made 10 interceptions.

Born January 18, 1950, in Anniston, Alabama. Council graduated from Cobb Avenue High School in 1968. In his senior season, he helped the team go to a 9-0-1 championship season. He earned all-conference honors and a scholarship to Kentucky State.

He attended college at Kentucky State University. In his senior season, Kentucky State ended 8-3-0 and played in the Orange Blossom Classic Bowl game. He was a Pittsburgh Courier Honorable mention. He was inducted into the Kentucky State Athletic Hall of Fame in 1987 and the Calhoun County (AL) Sports Hall of Fame in 2009.

Council was drafted by the Houston Oilers in the 7th round as the 160th pick in 1972. Rudolph played defensive end for six seasons for the Houston Oilers, the St. Louis Cardinals, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.  He helped the St. Louis Football Cardinals win two NFC East Championships (1974 & 1975). He retired after playing 6 seasons in the NFL with Houston, St. Louis and Tampa Bay.

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