Former Ohio State All-American offensive tackle Orlando Pace will join former Cleveland Browns quarterback Vinnie Testaverde as members in the newest class for the College Football Hall of Fame.
Pace, the 24th Buckeye player to make the Hall, is considered one of the most dominant offensive linemen in college football history, finishing fourth in the Heisman voting in 1996. Winner of the Rotary Lombardi Award in 1995 and 1996, Pace became the first ever player to win the award twice. He was the offensive lineman since 1972 to finish in the top-four in the Heisman vote, the winner ultimately being Florida quarterback Danny Wuerffel.
Pace started every game–38 in all–between 1994-96 before bypassing his senior year to enter the NFL Draft where he was selected first-overall by the St. Louis Rams. Pace went on to a 13-year career in the NFL where he was a member of the Rams’ 1999 Super Bowl championship team. He protected the blind side and cleared running lanes for the NFL’s MVP for three consecutive seasons (Kurt Warner in 1999 and 2000 and Marshall Faulk in 2001). Pace was named All-Pro five times and he was voted into seven Pro Bowl games.
“I don’t know how you could play the position any better than [Orlando] did,” said former Ohio State head coach John Cooper. “He was just a fantastic football player. “He was the best.”
Pace did not allow a sack in his final two years at Ohio State.