Johnson, Kennedy Named Preliminary Pro Football HOF Nominees


CORAL GABLES, Fla. – University of Miami Sports Hall of Fame members Jimmy Johnson and Cortez Kennedy have been named as modern-era preliminary nominees for the Pro Football Hall of Fame Class of 2012.

Johnson went 52-9 as the Canes’ head coach from 1984-88, leading UM to its second of five national championships in 1987. He went on coach 12 seasons in the NFL, where he guided the Dallas Cowboys to back-to-back Super Bowl titles in 1992 and 1993.

Kennedy was one of the defensive forces on Miami’s 1989 National Championship football team and helped lead the Hurricanes to a 22-2 record during the 1988 and 1989 seasons. The third overall pick in the first round of the 1990 NFL Draft by the Seattle Seahawks, Kennedy played 11 seasons in the NFL, all with Seattle. He was widely regarded as one of the top defensive linemen to play in the NFL, as he was named to the Pro Bowl eight times and four times was tabbed as an All-Pro. In 1992 he was named the NFL’s Defensive Player of the Year (AP).

The complete list of nominees for the Class of 2012 consists of 103 candidates. From that list of nominees, the Pro Football Hall of Fame Selection Committee will choose 25 candidates who will advance as semifinalist nominees. The list of 25 semifinalists will be announced in mid-November.

The list of 25 semifinalists will be further reduced by a mail ballot to 15 modern-era finalists and announced in early January.

The final list of nominees that will be considered for election will consist of the 15 modern-era finalists and the two senior nominees, former Pittsburgh Steelers defensive back Jack Butler and former Detroit Lions guard Dick Stanfel, who were selected this last month by the Hall of Fame’s Senior Selection Committee.

In 2008 the Hall of Fame modified its By-Laws for the Selection Committee making it mandatory for coaches, like players, to be retired five consecutive seasons. Prior to that change, coaches were eligible immediately upon retirement. As such, Parcells was a nominee in 2001, 2002, and 2003 and Schottenheimer was a nominee in 2000. This is their first year of eligibility under the new provision.

The Class of 2012 will be selected from the list of 17 finalists (15 modern-era and two senior nominees). The actual voting will be conducted at the Pro Football Hall of Fame Selection Committee’s annual meeting, which will be held on Saturday, Feb. 4, 2012 the day before Super Bowl XLVI at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Ind. The election results will be announced that evening on NFL Network, live from the Super Bowl Media Center.

While there is no set number for any class of enshrinees, the selection process by-laws provide that between four and seven new members will be selected.

Class of 2012 Modern Era Preliminary Nominees:


Running Backs
TIKI BARBER, Jerome Bettis, Larry Centers, Roger Craig, STEPHEN DAVIS, Terrell Davis, Eddie George, Curtis Martin, Brian Mitchell (also KR/PR), Gerald Riggs, Herschel Walker, Ricky Watters

Wide Receivers
Tim Brown (also KR), Cris Carter, Gary Clark, Mark Clayton, Henry Ellard (also PR), KEYSHAWN JOHNSON, Sterling Sharpe, Andre Reed, Jimmy Smith, ROD SMITH

Tight Ends
Todd Christensen, Frank Wycheck

Offensive Linemen
Tony Boselli (T), Lomas Brown (T), Jim Covert (T), Dermontti Dawson (C), Joe Fields (C), Jay Hilgenberg (C), Chris Hinton (G/T), Kent Hull (C), Joe Jacoby (T), Mike Kenn (T), Jim Lachey (T), Willie Roaf (T), WILL SHIELDS (G), Steve Wisniewski (G)

Defensive Linemen
Dave Butz (DE/DT), Chris Doleman (DE/LB), Carl Hairston (DE/DT), Charles Haley (DE/LB), Ed “Too Tall” Jones (DE), Cortez Kennedy (DT), Joe Klecko (DE/DT/NT), Dexter Manley (DE), Charles Mann (DE), Fred Smerlas (NT)

Cornelius Bennett, Kevin Greene (also DE), Ken Harvey, Clay Matthews, Karl Mecklenburg, Sam Mills

Defensive Backs
Eric Allen (CB), Steve Atwater (S), Joey Browner (S), LeRoy Butler (S), Kenny Easley (S), Albert Lewis (CB), Donnie Shell (S), TROY VINCENT(CB), Aeneas Williams (CB/S), Darren Woodson (S)

Gary Anderson (K), Nick Lowery (K), Reggie Roby (P), MIKE VANDERJAGT (K)

Special Teams
Steve Tasker (ST/WR)

Bill Arnsparger, Bud Carson, Don Coryell, BILL COWHER, Tom Flores, Jimmy Johnson, Chuck Knox, Chuck Mather, BILL PARCELLS, Buddy Parker, Dan Reeves, MARTY SCHOTTENHEIMER, Clark Shaughnessy, Dick Vermeil

K.S. “Bud” Adams, Jr. (Owner), Bobby Beathard (Admin.), Gil Brandt (Admin.), Leo Carlin (Admin.), Jack Kent Cooke (Owner), Otho Davis (Trainer), Ed DeBartolo, Jr. (Owner), Ron Gibbs (Official), Jim Kensil (Admin.), Eddie Kotal (Admin.), Art McNally (Official), Art Modell (Owner), Steve Sabol (NFL Films), Paul Tagliabue (Commissioner), Burl Toler, Sr. (Official), Jim Tunney (Official), Ron Wolf (Admin.), George Young (Admin.)

Italics denotes finalists for the Class of 2011

CAPS denotes first-year eligibles