Troy alum to don golden jacket

by Caleb Thomas

From the Troy Trojans, to the Dallas Cowboys, to the Denver Broncos, DeMarcus Ware has made an impact everywhere he’s been. Now, the former Troy University linebacker and defensive end will be remembered at the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. Last week, Ware was elected to be inducted into the Hall of Fame in his second year of eligibility.

A defensive end and linebacker from 2001 to 2004, Ware was a star at Troy during the program’s transition to NCAA Division I football, and his impact on the team can’t be overstated. 

“DeMarcus Ware is the embodiment of the ideal student-athlete, and we are proud that he is the first player from Troy University and the Sun Belt Conference to be enshrined in the NFL Hall of Fame,” said Chancellor of Troy University Dr. Jack Hawkins, Jr.

Ware joined this prestigious group of athletes after a 12-year professional career. During his time in the NFL, where he played for the Dallas Cowboys and Denver Broncos, Ware was selected to nine Pro Bowls and got a ring in Super Bowl 50. 

In the NFL, Ware accumulated 657 tackles and 138.5 sacks. The Auburn native was selected to four NFL All-Pro teams but has made history in other ways as well. After being selected in the first round, number 11 overall, by the Cowboys in the 2005 NFL Draft, Ware became the highest selected Trojan in school history. He earned the selection after a stellar 2004 season that saw him win Sun Belt Conference Defensive Player of the Year. 

In his collegiate career, Ware recorded 55.5 tackles for loss and 27 sacks, and is highly regarded as one of the best Troy football players to ever play. Dr. Hawkins said he set the stage for everything happening in the program today.

“DeMarcus’ excellent leadership and on-field performance contributed greatly to our successful transition to the highest level of NCAA football and set the stage for the unprecedented success we are enjoying under Coach Jon Sumrall,”  Hawkins said.

2004 saw Ware help the Trojans make their first ever bowl appearance with a 53 tackle, 10.5 sack season. His 2004 campaign with Troy was a dominant season – he would record many more of those in the NFL. 

With the Cowboys, Ware led the league in sacks twice, in 2008 and 2010. Ware finished second in the NFL Defensive Player of the Year voting in 2008, ending the season with 84 tackles, 20 sacks and six forced fumbles. 

All things considered, Ware heads to Canton with the ninth most sacks in NFL history. The new members will be enshrined in the Hall of Fame on Aug. 5.

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