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Chris Zorich Named To College Football Hall Of Fame


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Former All-American among 12 players and two coaches to be inducted in December.

 

May 9, 2007

 

Chris Zorich, two-time All-American defensive tackle at the University of Notre Dame, was one of 12 former college players and two coaches named today to the National Football Foundation's 2007 College Football Hall of Fame Class for the NCAA Football Bowl Subdivision (formerly Division I-A), announced Wednesday by Ron Johnson, chairman of the National Football Foundation.

 

The 2007 College Football Hall of Fame class will be inducted at the 50th Annual Awards Dinner on Dec. 4, 2007, at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City. The players and coaches will be enshrined at the Hall of Fame in South Bend in August 2007.

 

Zorich becomes the 42nd former Notre Dame player inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. The Irish also have five former coaches in the Hall and the 47 total enshrinees are the most of any NCAA institution, the most recent being John Huarte in 2005.

 

A three-year starter at defensive tackle for the Irish, Zorich left Notre Dame as one of the most decorated defensive players in school history. He was a two-time All-American, earning unanimous first-team All-America accolades as a senior in 1990. Zorich was named United Press International Lineman of Year for 1989 and was chosen CBS Sports/Chevrolet Defensive Player of the Year for 1990. He was selected as the 1990 Lombardi Award recipient, given annually to the outstanding lineman in college football, and was a finalist for the Outland Trophy that year, too. Zorich started at nose tackle on the 1988 national championship team and finished his Notre Dame career with 219 tackles, including 21 tackles for loss.

 

Zorich was drafted in the second round of the 1991 NFL Draft by Chicago and played for the Bears through the 1996 season. His stay in Chicago was highlighted in 1993 when he was named an alternate to the NFC Pro Bowl team. Zorich played for the Washington Redskins in 1997 before retiring from the NFL to pursue a law degree at Notre Dame.

 

Zorich graduated from Notre Dame with a Bachelor of Arts degree in American Studies in 1991 and from the Notre Dame Law School in 2002.

 

A native of Chicago's South Side, Zorich is president of the Christopher Zorich Foundation and is a past recipient of USA Weekend's "Most Caring Athlete Award" and the Jesse Owens Foundation Humanitarian Award. The Foundation assists disadvantaged families through a variety of diverse activities and have affected over 100,000 individuals.

 

Zorich currently lives in Chicago where he works for the law firm of Schuyler, Roche & Zwirner, P.C.

 

Here are Zorich's Notre Dame statistics:

Year Tkls TFLs Sacks FF FR PBU

1988 70 4-8 3.5-(-17) 0 3 3

1989 92 5-12 3-(-27) 1 2 2

1990 57 12-26 4-26 2 1 1

Career 219 21-56 10.5-70 3 6 6

 

Here's the complete listing of the 2007 College Football Hall of Fame Class:

 

PLAYER (SCHOOL), POSITION, YEARS

Tom Brahaney (Oklahoma), Center, 1970-72

Dave Brown (Michigan), Defensive Back, 1972-74

Jeff Davis (Clemson), Linebacker, 1978-81

Doug Flutie (Boston College), Quarterback, 1981-84

Johnnie Johnson (Texas), Safety, 1976-79

Rex Kern (Ohio State), Quarterback, 1968-70

Ahmad Rashad (Oregon), Running Back/Wide Receiver, 1969-71

Anthony Thompson (Indiana), Running Back, 1986-89

Wilson Whitley (Houston), Defensive Tackle, 1973-76

Reggie Williams (Dartmouth), Linebacker, 1973-75

Richard Wood (Southern California), Linebacker, 1972-74

Chris Zorich (Notre Dame), Defensive Tackle, 1987-90

 

COACHES - SCHOOL (YEARS)

Herb Deromedi - Central Michigan (1978-93)

Joe Paterno - Penn State (1966-Present)

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Been looking for the "really old" Sports Illustrated article (1989 issue) about Chris and his mom. It's a good read for Mother's Day especially. To sum it up it talks about how embarassed he was in his younger years that they would have to ride the bus to get a Christmas tree but his mom would take three other bus routes so that his friends wouldn't see him on the bus with the tree. His mom passed away while watching him play at the Hula Bowl that year. Chris found her when he came home from the trip sitting in her chair... he whispered in her ear "I love you", kissed her on the cheek, and closed her eyes. She never did get to see him play for the Bears...

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ya know, the article in blue & gold got me thinking about zorich and rice. do you think it's possible to bring in those kind of players to ND now? by that i mean good kids who maybe don't have the academic numbers one would expect for a ND recruit?

 

i wonder, as i, like most everybody else on here, always am looking at the test scores and GPA of prospective recruits and are rightly proud of ND's commitment to bringing is *student* athletes but reading that article reminded me what ND gained bringing in zorich and rice and i don't mean just on the football field.

 

i want ND to give opportunities to people like zorich who is a late-bloomer and such. i hope, in this day and age, we can. because i can't think of two better reps for ND than zorich and rice...

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ya know, the article in blue & gold got me thinking about zorich and rice. do you think it's possible to bring in those kind of players to ND now? by that i mean good kids who maybe don't have the academic numbers one would expect for a ND recruit?

 

i wonder, as i, like most everybody else on here, always am looking at the test scores and GPA of prospective recruits and are rightly proud of ND's commitment to bringing is *student* athletes but reading that article reminded me what ND gained bringing in zorich and rice and i don't mean just on the football field.

 

i want ND to give opportunities to people like zorich who is a late-bloomer and such. i hope, in this day and age, we can. because i can't think of two better reps for ND than zorich and rice...

 

I think that it is still possible for kids like Zorich and Rice to get into ND. IF CW believes they have the character and drive to succeed both on the field and in the classroom, I think that they'll be able to get them in.

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Guest SirJohn

Fanatic, without direct quotes I do recall a Weis Presser, that more or less Admin will rule but that if grades are an issue the coaches could go before Admin and ask that with some tutoring/help do you think this kid would make it at ND.

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Great article's guys!

 

Chris was a childhood hero of mine.

 

I remember fighting with my bro's to see who would wear our #50 mesh jersey, while playing backyard football!!

 

He is a class act!! Congrats Z

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