IRVING, Texas – University of Maryland football great E.J. Henderson has been named to the 2019 ballot for induction into the College Football Hall of Fame, the National Football Foundation (NFF) & College Hall of Fame announced. Henderson, a two-time consensus First Team All-American, is one of 76 Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) players on the 2019 ballot.
“It’s an enormous honor to just be on the ballot when you think that more than 5.26 million people have played college football and only 997 players have been inducted,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “The Hall’s requirement of being a First-Team All-American creates a much smaller pool of about 1,500 individuals who are even eligible. Being in today’s elite group means an individual is truly among the greatest to have ever played the game, and those actually elected to the Class will be part of a momentous year as we celebrate the 150th anniversary of college football in 2019.”
Henderson was recognized as the 2002 Bednarik Award (nation’s best defensive player) and Butkus Award (nation’s top linebacker) winner, while helping Maryland earn an Orange Bowl berth and a No. 11 year-end national ranking. Henderson was also named the 2001 Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) Player of the Year and was a two-time ACC Defensive Player of the Year, leading the Terps to the 2001 ACC title.
Henderson finished his Terrapin career second all-time with 472 tackles and first all-time with 62.5 tackles for loss. He also posted 18 sacks and three forced fumbles and was inducted into the University of Maryland Athletics Hall of Fame in 2016.
A second round draft selection by the Minnesota Vikings, Henderson played nine years in the NFL and was selected to the 2011 Pro Bowl. He was named the Minnesota Vikings Community Man of the Year in 2010 and he established the EJ Henderson Youth Foundation in 2007.
The College Football Hall of Fame ballot was sent 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 Courts, which will deliberate and select the class. The FBS Honors Court, chaired by NFF Board Member and College Football Hall of Famer Archie Griffin, and the Divisional Honors Court, chaired by former Marshall head coach, longtime athletics director and NFF Board Member Jack Lengyel, include an elite and geographically diverse pool of athletic administrators, Hall of Famers and members of the media.
The announcement of the 2019 Class will be made Monday, Jan. 7, 2019, in Santa Clara, Calif. The city is serving as the host for the CFP National Championship, which will be played later that day at Levi’s Stadium. The announcement will be televised live, and specific viewing information will be available as the date draws near.
The 2019 class will officially be inducted during the 62nd NFF Annual Awards Dinner on Dec. 10, 2019, at the New York Hilton Midtown. The inductees will be permanently enshrined at the College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta later that December and honored on the field during the 15th Annual National Hall of Fame Salute during the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl. They will also be honored at their respective schools with an NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salute, presented by Fidelity Investments, during the 2019 season.