Charlottesville, VA – Former Virginia All-America safety Anthony Poindexter has been named to the 2020 Class of the College Football Hall of Fame, the National Football Foundation announced today. He will be inducted during the 63rd NFF Annual Awards Dinner on Dec. 8 in New York City and immortalized at the College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta.
The Lynchburg, Va., native becomes the fifth Cavalier player to be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame. UVA’s previous inductees include (class): Bill Dudley (1956), Tom Scott (1979), Joe Palumbo (1999) and Jim Dombrowski (2008). Former Cavalier head coaches inducted into the Hall include Earle “Greasy” Neale (1967), Frank Murray (1983) and George Welsh (2004).
Just the second player in UVA history to be a two-time first-team All-American, Poindexter garnered consensus honors after his senior campaign. The 1998 ACC Defensive Player of the Year was a finalist for both the Thorpe and Nagurski Awards while playing for Welsh. After helping UVA to a share of the 1995 conference title and earning honorable mention All-ACC accolades, Poindexter went on to become just the third Cavalier to be named a three-time first-team All-ACC selection.
A second-team All-American in 1996, Poindexter led Virginia to three bowl games, including a win in the 1995 Peach Bowl. Named the 1997 Dudley Award winner as the best player in the state of Virginia, he owns the school record with seven career fumble recoveries while his 342 career tackles are the second most all-time among Cavalier defensive backs. A two-time recipient of the Ned McDonald Award as UVA’s most outstanding defensive player, Poindexter owns or shares school single-game records for interceptions (three vs. NC State in 1996), assisted tackles (14 vs. Virginia Tech in 1996) and fumble recoveries (two vs. Georgia Tech in 1997 and again vs. Duke in 1998). A member of the ACC All-Academic Team as a junior, his No. 3 jersey was retired in 2009.
Poindexter’s college career ended prematurely when he suffered a severe knee injury during the seventh game of the 1998 season against NC State. A two-time team captain, he was named a co-recipient of the 1998 Brian Piccolo Award as the ACC’s most courageous football player
Poindexter graduated from Virginia in 1999 with a bachelor’s degree in anthropology. A seventh-round pick in the 1999 NFL Draft, Poindexter played for the Baltimore Ravens and Cleveland Browns during three seasons in the league. During the 2000 season, he played in 10 games for the Ravens on the way to their victory in Super Bowl XXXV.
Following his NFL career, Poindexter spent 11 seasons on the coaching staff at Virginia, starting as a graduate assistant and ending his Virginia tenure as safeties coach in 2013. After serving as defensive coordinator and safeties coach at Connecticut from 2014-16, he is entering his fourth season as the co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach at Purdue.
Joining Poindexter in the 2020 class are: Lomas Brown (OT, Florida, 1981-84), Keith Byars (RB, Ohio State, 1982-85), Eric Crouch (QB, Nebraska, 1998-2001), Eric Dickerson (RB, Southern Methodist, 1979-82), Glenn Dorsey (DT, LSU, 2004-07), Jumbo Elliott (OT, Michigan, 1984-87), Jason Hanson (PK, Washington State, 1988-91), E.J. Henderson (LB, Maryland, 1999-2002), E.J. Junior (DE, Alabama, 1977-80), Steve McNair (QB, Alcorn State, 1991-94), Cade McNown (QB, UCLA, 1995-98), Leslie O’Neal (DT, Oklahoma State, 1982-85), David Pollock (DE, Georgia, 2001-04), Bob Stein (DE, Minnesota, 1966-68), Michael Westbrook (WR, Colorado, 1991-94) and Elmo Wright (WR, Houston, 1968-70) and coaches Dick Sheridan and Andy Tally.
The 17 first-team All-America players and two standout coaches in the 2020 class were selected from the of 76 players and five coaches from the Football Bowl Subdivision, the 101 players and 33 coaches from the divisional ranks and the NFF Veterans Committee candidates.
Poindexter is one of eight members of the class who were first-team consensus All-Americans and one of seven players who were multi-year first-team All-Americans. He also shares the distinction to be one of nine players to have been coached by a College Football Hall of Fame coach (Welsh).
To be eligible for induction into the College Football Hall of Fame, a player must have received first-team All-America recognition by a selector recognized by the NCAA and utilized to comprise its consensus All-America team. A player is eligible for consideration by the NFF’s Honors Court 10 full seasons after his final year of intercollegiate football played.
Founded in 1947 with early leadership from General Douglas MacArthur, legendary Army coach Earl “Red” Blaik and immortal journalist Grantland Rice, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame is a non-profit educational organization that runs programs designed to use the power of amateur football in developing scholarship, citizenship and athletic achievement in young people. With 120 chapters and 12,000 members nationwide, NFF programs include Football Matters®, the Chick-fil-A College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta, The William V. Campbell Trophy® Presented by Mazda, the NFF National Scholar-Athlete Class Presented by Fidelity Investments and a series of initiatives to honor the legends of the past and inspire the leaders of the future.