NORMAN — The National Football Foundation (NFF) and College Football Hall of Fame announced the 2019 ballot for induction into the College Football Hall of Fame on Monday and former University of Oklahoma standout Rickey Dixon earned a spot as one of 76 players listed from the Football Bowl Subdivision.
A 1987 consensus All-American, Dixon, who was also on the 2017 and '18 Hall of Fame ballots, was the first Sooner to win the Jim Thorpe Award, given to college football's top defensive back. He earned first-team All-Big Eight honors as a junior and senior in 1986 and '87, and finished his career with 170 total tackles and 17 interceptions. His 17 career interceptions are one shy of the OU record while his nine picks in 1987 still stand as the school single-season standard.
Oklahoma went a combined 42-5-1 in Dixon's four years and played in the Orange Bowl each season. The 1985 squad beat Penn State in the Orange Bowl to claim OU's sixth national championship.
"It's an enormous honor to just be on the ballot when you think that more than 5.26 million people have played college football and only 997 players have been inducted," said NFF President and CEO Steve Hatchell. "The Hall's requirement of being a first-team All-American creates a much smaller pool of about 1,500 individuals who are even eligible. Being in today's elite group means an individual is truly among the greatest to have ever played the game, and those actually elected to the Class will be part of a momentous year as we celebrate the 150th anniversary of college football in 2019."
A 1987 consensus All-American, Dixon was the first Sooner to win the Jim Thorpe Award and earned first-team All-Big Eight honors as a junior and senior in 1986 and '87. He finished his career with 170 total tackles and 17 interceptions.
Dixon was the star of the "Game of the Century II" in 1987, with Nebraska rated No. 1 in the country and OU ranked No. 2. The Dallas product intercepted two Huskers passes, the second of which came in the fourth quarter to help seal OU's 17-7 road win and OU's Orange Bowl berth.
Dixon was selected No. 5 overall in the 1988 NFL Draft by the Cincinnati Bengals. He played in the league for six seasons with the Bengals and Los Angeles Raiders, and made an appearance in Super Bowl XXIII with Cincinnati against the San Francisco 49ers.
The announcement of the 2019 Class will be made Monday, Jan. 7, 2019, in Santa Clara, Calif. The city is serving as the host for the CFP National Championship, which will be played later that day at Levi's Stadium. Some of the electees will be on site during the announcement to represent the class and share their thoughts on being elected. The Jan. 7 announcement will be televised live, and specific viewing information will be available as the date draws near. Several of the electees will also participate in the pregame festivities and the coin toss before the championship game.