Simoneau Selected to 2012 CFB HOF Ballot

Mark Simoneau

Feb. 28, 2012

MANHATTAN, Kan. – Former K-State Consensus All-American linebacker Mark Simoneau is one of 76 players nationally who comprises the 2012 Football Bowl Subdivision Ballot for induction into the College Football Hall of Fame, the National Football Foundation announced today.

Simoneau, a Smith Center native who lettered for the Wildcats from 1996-1999, was a Consensus All-American in 1999 and the runner-up for the Butkus Award that same season. A K-State Ring of Honor inductee and a four-year starter for head coach Bill Snyder, Simoneau led the Wildcats to a 42-7 record during his career while totaling 400 career tackles.

A third-round selection in the 2000 NFL Draft by Atlanta, Simoneau played a total of 11 seasons in the NFL with stops in Atlanta, Philadelphia, New Orleans and Kansas City.

K-State is represented in the Hall of Fame by three individuals as coaches Pappy Waldorf and Charles Bachman were elected to the Hall in 1966 and 1978, respectively, while the last Wildcat to enter the prestigious fraternity was linebacker Gary Spani, who was elected in 2002.

"Having a ballot and a voice in the selection of the inductees is one of the most cherished NFF member benefits," said NFF Chairman Archie Manning, a 1989 Hall of Fame inductee from Ole Miss. "There is no group more knowledgeable or passionate about college football than our membership, and the tradition of the ballot helps us engage them in the lofty responsibility of selecting those who have reached the pinnacle of achievement in our sport."

The ballot was mailed this week to the more than 12,000 NFF members and current Hall of Famers whose votes will be tabulated and submitted to the NFF's Honors Court, which deliberates and selects the class. Chaired by Gene Corrigan, a former ACC Commissioner and NCAA president, the 14-member NFF Honors Court includes an elite and geographically diverse pool of athletics directors, conference commissioners, Hall of Famers and members of the media.

"It's an enormous honor to just be on the ballot when you think that more than 4.86 million people have played college football," said NFF President & CEO Steven J. Hatchell. "The Hall's requirement of being a First Team All-American creates a much smaller pool of only 1,900 individuals who are even eligible to be on the ballot, so being in today's group of 76 names means an individual is truly among the greatest to ever have played the game, and we are proud to announce their names today."

The FBS Hall of Fame Class will be announced live in New York City during a noon press conference on May 15 and inducted at the 55th NFF Annual Awards Dinner on December 4, 2012, at the landmark Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City.

To be eligible for the ballot, players must have been named a First Team All-America by a major/national selector as recognized and utilized by the NCAA for their consensus All-America teams; played their last year of intercollegiate football at least ten years prior; played within the last 50 years and cannot be currently playing professional football.

Once nominated for consideration, all player candidates are submitted to one of eight District Screening Committees, depending on their school's geographic location, which conducts a vote to determine who will appear on the ballot and represent their respective districts. Each year, approximately 15 candidates, who are not selected for the Hall of Fame, will be named automatic holdovers and will bypass the district screening process and automatically appear on the ballot the following year. Additionally, the Veterans Committee may make recommendations to Honors Court for exceptions that allow for the induction of players who played more than 50 years ago.

Of the 4.86 million individuals who have played college football since Princeton first battled Rutgers on November 6, 1869, only 900 players have earned induction into the College Football Hall of Fame, or less than .0002 percent of those who have played the game during the past 143 years. From the coaching ranks, 194 individuals have achieved Hall of Fame distinction.

The 2012 Divisional College Football Hall of Fame Class will be inducted and enshrined simultaneously July 20-21 in South Bend, Ind., joining the 2011 Football Bowl Subdivision Hall of Fame Class, which was inducted this past December, at their enshrinement.