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Poindexter to be honored at Virginia-Duke game on Saturday

anthony poindexter

Former Virginia safety Anthony Poindexter was named to the College Football Hall of Fame’s 2020 class (Photo: UVA Media Relations).

The University of Virginia and The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame announced today that they will jointly honor 2020 College Football Hall of Fame electee Anthony Poindexter with an NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salute, presented by Fidelity Investments.

The Salute will take place this Saturday during the Cavaliers’ home football game against Duke.

Coverage of the game will start at 12:30 p.m. ET on ACC RSN.

“It’s great. But there’s a lot of people who helped me get here,” Poindexter said after the announcement in March 2020. “Obviously my family and all the coaches I’ve had, all the way up through youth and all the way through college and my teammates.”

The NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salute program, which began with the inaugural College Football Hall of Fame Class in 1951, has become a hallowed tradition, and to this day the singular events remain the first of numerous activities in the Hall of Fame experience.

During the NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salutes, each electee returns to his respective school to accept a Hall of Fame plaque that will stay on permanent display at the institution. The events take place on the field during a home game, and many Hall of Famers cite the experience as the ultimate capstone to their careers, providing them one more chance to take the field and be recognized in front of their home crowd.

The 2020 and 2021 College Football Hall of Fame Classes will be officially inducted during the 63rd NFF Annual Awards Dinner Presented by Las Vegas Dec. 7 at the ARIA Resort & Casino Las Vegas.

(The 2020 event was canceled due to COVID-19.)

“Regarded as one of the fiercest hitters in the game during his career, Anthony Poindexter ranks among the best defensive backs in Virginia history,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “We are thrilled to honor him at Scott Stadium.”

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 College Football Hall of Fame coach George Welsh.

After guiding UVA to a share of the 1995 conference title and earning Honorable Mention All-ACC accolades, Poindexter would go on to become just the third Cavalier to be named a three-time First Team All-ACC selection. 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

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 the school single-game record for assisted tackles (14 vs. Virginia Tech in 1996) while sharing the single-game marks for interceptions (3 vs. NC State in 1996) and fumble recoveries (2 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 by the Cavaliers in 2009.

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 his alma mater, starting as a graduate assistant and ending his Virginia tenure as safeties coach in 2013. He then served as defensive coordinator and safeties coach at Connecticut from 2014-16 and as co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach at Purdue from 2017-20. Poindexter is in his first season as co-defensive coordinator and safeties coach at Penn State.

Poindexter becomes the fifth Cavalier player in the College Football Hall of Fame, joining Jim Dombrowski (1982-85), Bill Dudley (1939-41), Joe Palumbo (1949-51) and Tom Scott (1950-52)

Three former Virginia coaches are also in the Hall: Frank Murray (1937-45), Greasy Neale (1923-28) and George Welsh (1982-2000).

The 2020 College Football Hall of Fame Class includes Lomas Brown (Florida), Keith Byars (Ohio State), Eric Crouch (Nebraska), Eric Dickerson (SMU), Glenn Dorsey (LSU), John “Jumbo” Elliott (Michigan), Jason Hanson (Washington State), E.J. Henderson (Maryland), E.J. Junior (Alabama), Steve McNair (Alcorn State), Cade McNown (UCLA), Leslie O’Neal (Oklahoma State), Anthony Poindexter (Virginia), David Pollack (Georgia), Bob Stein (Minnesota), Michael Westbrook (Colorado), Elmo Wright (Houston) and coaches Dick Sheridan (Furman, North Carolina State), and Andy Talley (St. Lawrence [NY], Villanova).

The 2021 College Football Hall of Fame Class includes Harris Barton (North Carolina), David Fulcher (Arizona State), Dan Morgan (Miami [FL]), Carson Palmer (Southern California), Tony Romo (Eastern Illinois), Kenneth Sims (Texas), C.J. Spiller (Clemson), Darren Sproles (Kansas State), Aaron Taylor (Notre Dame), Andre Tippett (Iowa), Al Wilson (Tennessee) and coaches Rudy Hubbard (Florida A&M) and Bob Stoops (Oklahoma).

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