May 7, 2013
Former Navy head football coach Wayne Hardin has been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame it was announced Tuesday by the National Football Foundation. Hardin is the 24th person affiliated with the Naval Academy to be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame and the third head coach, joining Gil Dobie (17-3 at Navy from 1917-19) and George Welsh (55-46-1 at Navy from 1973-81).
Hardin will officially be inducted at the 56th National Football Foundation’s Annual Awards Dinner on December 10th, 2013, at the Waldorf=Astoria in New York City and officially enshrined in the summer of 2014 at the College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta, Ga.
“It’s a wonderful feeling to join such great men that are already in the Hall of Fame,” said Hardin. “I had the opportunity to play for one of the all-time great coaches in Alonzo Stagg and being in the same company as him is a great thrill. Being inducted in the Hall of Fame isn’t about me. It’s about all the players, assistant coaches, support staff and fans at Navy and Temple that contributed to our success. It is a great honor to be selected.”
Hardin compiled a record of 38-22-2 as Navy’s head coach from 1959-64, including a 5-1 mark against Army and a 3-3 record against Notre Dame. He coached two Heisman Trophy winners in Joe Bellino (1960) and Roger Staubach (1963) and led Navy to two New Year’s Day bowl games.
The 1960 team compiled a record of 9-2 and was ranked No. 4 in the country under the direction of Hardin and earned victories over Boston College, Washington, SMU, Air Force, Notre Dame, Virginia and Army before losing to Missouri, 21-14, in the Orange Bowl.
“I am thrilled that Coach Hardin has been elected to the College Football Hall of Fame,” said Bellino, who went on to serve 28 years in the Navy and played three years for the Boston Patriots. “I don’t think it would have been possible for me to win the Heisman Trophy without Coach Hardin being our head coach. He afforded me the opportunity to show my talents. He put in some plays that highlighted my passing and running ability and I owe a lot to him. Wayne was a fantastic game preparation coach. He was able to figure out the other teams’ weaknesses and attacked those weaknesses.“
In 1963, the Midshipmen rose to No. 2 in the national rankings with a 9-2 record that included victories over West Virginia, Michigan, Pitt, Notre Dame, Maryland, Duke and Army before losing to No. 1 Texas, 28-6, in the Cotton Bowl.
“Coach Hardin was instrumental in me getting into the Hall of Fame,” said Staubach, who served five years in the Navy before quarterbacking the Dallas Cowboys to four Super Bowls in his 11-year Hall of Fame career. “He is very deserving of this great honor.
"Coach Hardin was recognized as the most innovative and creative coach of his time,” said Tom Lynch, who was the team captain in 1963 and later reached the rank of Rear Admiral and was Superintendent of the Naval Academy from 1991-94. “As players, we were well prepared for every game and had the confidence of knowing that whatever the outcome, because of Coach Hardin and his staff, we would never be outcoached. We are so proud and happy that Coach Hardin is finally getting the recognition he so richly deserves."
“This is a wonderful honor for one of the all-time greats in the coaching profession,” said Naval Academy Director of Athletics Chet Gladchuk. “What Wayne Hardin accomplished at a Service Academy is truly remarkable. Taking the Naval Academy to two New Year’s Day games and coaching two Heisman Trophy winners in a span of four years has to be one of the great coaching accomplishments in college football history.”
The all-time leader in wins at Temple, Hardin served as head coach of the Owls from 1970-82. He led Temple to its only 10-win season in program history during the 1979 season, finishing at No. 17 in both major polls and beating favored California in the Garden State Bowl. Hardin also mentored Owl quarterback Steve Joachim who won the Maxwell Trophy in 1973.
Hardin attended the College of the Pacific, playing football for College Football Hall of Fame coach Amos Alonzo Stagg. A 1998 Pacific Athletics Hall of Fame inductee, Hardin earned 11 varsity letters before graduating college in 1948.
2013 COLLEGE FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME CLASS
· TED BROWN – TB, North Carolina State (1975-78)
· TEDY BRUSCHI – DE, Arizona (1992-95)
· RON DAYNE – RB, Wisconsin (1996-99)
· TOMMIE FRAZIER – QB, Nebraska (1992-95)
· JERRY GRAY – DB, Texas (1981-84)
· WAYNE HARDIN – 118-74-5 (61.2%); Navy (1959-64) and Temple (1970-82)
· BILL McCARTNEY – 93-55-5 (62.4%); Colorado (1982-94)
· STEVE MEILINGER* – E, Kentucky (1951-53)
· ORLANDO PACE – OT, Ohio State (1994-96)
· ROD SHOATE (deceased) – LB, Oklahoma (1972-74)
· PERCY SNOW – LB, Michigan State (1986-89)
· VINNY TESTAVERDE – QB, Miami, Fla. (1982, 1984-86)
· DON TRULL – QB, Baylor (1961-63)
· DANNY WUERFFEL – QB, Florida (1993-96)