MVSU's Rice enters NFL Hall of Fame
August 7, 2010
Canton, Ohio - The most prolific NFL wide receiver of all time and the product of Mississippi Valley State, Jerry Rice, was enshrined Saturday into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.
Rice, who owns NFL records for catches (1,549), receiving yards (22,895), and touchdown receptions (197), and won three Super Bowl titles and a Super Bowl MVP in XXIII, was the 16th player taken overall in the 1985 draft out of Mississippi Valley State. As a Delta Devil, he and quarterback Willie Totten rewrote all the NCAA history books.
No Division I-A school showed interest in Rice coming out of high school, but Mississippi Valley State offered him the chance to play college football in his hometown and he produced one of the greatest careers in the history of the game.
As a sophomore, Rice caught 66 passes for 1,133 yards and seven touchdowns. He followed that performance with a record-setting 1983 campaign, setting NCAA marks for receptions (102) and receiving yards (1,450). He was named first-team Division I-AA All-America.
Rice finished ninth in the 1984 Heisman Trophy voting as he broke his own Division I-AA records for receptions (103) and receiving yards (1,682). His 27 touchdown receptions that season set the NCAA mark for all divisions. Rice was named the 1984 SWAC Player of the Year and Offensive Player of the Year for the State of Mississippi.
In addition to being named first-team Division I-AA All-America, the NEA and Football Writers’ Association of America both named Rice to their first-team Division I-A All-America squads. By the end of his collegiate career, Rice shattered every Mississippi Valley State receiving record, catching 301 career passes for 4,693 yards and 50 touchdowns.