National Football Foundation

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Coach Jim Tressel Set for Oct. 10 NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salute, Presented by Fidelity Investments
Youngstown State and the National Football Foundation will jointly honor Tressel, a 2015 College Football Hall of Fame inductee, as the Penguins host Illinois State.
Published: 10/7/2015 1:00:00 PM
(Pictured: Youngstown State and the NFF will jointly honor former head football coach Jim Tressel, now the university's president, with an NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salute, presented by Fidelity Investments, during the game between the Penguins and Illinois State Saturday, Oct. 10, on ESPN3.)

IRVING, Texas (Oct. 7, 2015)
– Youngstown State University and The National Football Foundation (NFF) & College Hall of Fame announced today that they will jointly honor former head football coach Jim Tressel, now the university’s president, with an NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salute, presented by Fidelity Investments, on Saturday, Oct. 10, in Youngstown, Ohio, during the game between the Penguins and Illinois State. Coverage of the game will start at 7 p.m. ET on ESPN3.

“It is an extraordinary honor to have been selected by the National Football Foundation as a member of the 2015 class of the College Football Hall of Fame,” Tressel said after the announcement in January. “To be inducted alongside such a distinguished group of players and coaches, and to join the previously elected members, is certainly humbling. I am forever indebted to the outstanding student-athletes and coaches that have made this moment possible.”

The NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salute program, which began with the inaugural class in 1951, has become a hallowed tradition, and to this day the singular events remain the first of numerous activities in each inductee’s Hall of Fame experience. During the NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salutes, each inductee returns to his alma mater to accept a Hall of Fame plaque that will remain on permanent display at the institution. The events take place on the field during a home game, and many inductees cite the experience as the ultimate capstone to their careers, providing them one more chance to take the field and hear the crowd roar their name.

“Coach Jim Tressel’s name will always be synonymous with Youngstown State,” said NFF President and CEO Steve Hatchell. “He led the Penguins to their most successful period in history, including an extraordinary four FCS national championships in six appearances in the title game. We are thrilled to honor him in front of the Penguin faithful at Stambaugh Stadium.”

One of the greatest coaches in the history of the state of Ohio, Jim Tressel brought five national titles to the state and is the only head coach to win a national title at both levels of Division I college football. Along the way, he amassed an impressive career record of 229-79-2 (74.2%). He becomes the first College Football Hall of Fame inductee (player or coach) from Youngstown State.

Tressel served as head coach at Youngstown State from 1986-2000, leading the Penguins to 10 postseason berths in 15 seasons and four FCS national championships in six appearances in the title game. Boasting the most wins of any FCS coach in the 1990s, Tressel led Youngstown State to the 1987 Ohio Valley Conference title, and he was named OVC Coach of the Year. He was also a two-time AFCA National Coach of the Year and the 1994 FCS Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year while with the Penguins.  

Tressel became the head coach at Ohio State in 2001, and he led the Buckeyes to the BCS National Championship a year later, with subsequent appearances in the championship game following the 2006 and 2007 seasons. He led Ohio State to national rankings every season, including seven finishes in the top five, and at least a share of six Big Ten titles. During his time in Columbus, Ohio, Tressel received Bobby Dodd Coach of the Year, Bear Bryant Award and FWAA Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year honors.

During his career at both universities, Tressel coached 10 national major award winners, including 2006 Heisman Trophy winner Troy Smith, as well as 73 First Team All-Americans and 80 first team all-conference selections. The Berea, Ohio, native also coached seven Academic All-Americans and three NFF National Scholar-Athletes, including 2003 William V. Campbell Trophy winner Craig Krenzel.

Tressel was a first team all-conference quarterback at Baldwin-Wallace (Ohio), where he played for his father, College Football Hall of Fame coach Lee Tressel, and the Tressels become the first father-son coaching combination in the history of the Hall. A member of the Youngstown State Athletics Hall of Fame, Jim Tressel is also enshrined in the Greater Cleveland Sports and Baldwin-Wallace Athletics Halls of Fame. After his coaching days, Tressel served as a consultant for the Indianapolis Colts and as vice president of Strategic Engagement for the University of Akron before becoming president at Youngstown State University in July 2014.

Including the 2015 class, only 963 players and 209 coaches have been inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame from the nearly 5.12 million people who have played or coached the game over the past 147 years. In other words, only two ten-thousandths of one percent (.0002) of those who have set foot on the gridiron have earned the distinction. Click here for a complete list of players and coaches in the Hall.

The 2015 College Football Hall of Fame Class will be officially inducted at the 58th NFF Annual Awards Dinner, held at New York City’s historic Waldorf Astoria Hotel on Tuesday, Dec. 8. This year’s College Football Hall of Fame Class includes: Trev Alberts (Nebraska), Brian Bosworth (Oklahoma), Bob Breunig (Arizona State), Sean Brewer (Millsaps [Miss.]), Ruben Brown (Pittsburgh), Wes Chandler (Florida), Thom Gatewood (Notre Dame), Dick Jauron (Yale), Clinton Jones (Michigan State), Lincoln Kennedy (Washington), the late Rob Lytle (Michigan), Michael Payton (Marshall), Art Still (Kentucky), Zach Thomas (Texas Tech), Ricky Williams (Texas) and coaches Bill Snyder (Kansas State) and Jim Tressel (Youngstown State, Ohio State). For more information, please contact Will Rudd at or by calling 972.556.1000.

Remaining Scheduled 2015 NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salutes
Presented by Fidelity Investments
(Chronological Order)





Oct. 10

Sean Brewer

Millsaps [Miss.] (1989-92)

Centre [Ky.]

Oct. 10

Trev Alberts

Nebraska (1990-93)


Oct. 10

Coach Jim Tressel

Youngstown State (1986-2000)

Illinois State

Oct. 24

Ricky Williams

Texas (1995-98)

Kansas State

Oct. 29

Ruben Brown

Pittsburgh (1991-94)

North Carolina

Nov. 14

Bob Breunig

Arizona State (1972-74)


Nov. 21

Dick Jauron

Yale (1970-72)


Nov. 27

Lincoln Kennedy

Washington (1989-92)

Washington State

The 2015 season marks the sixth season that Fidelity Investments, a leading provider of not-for-profit workplace retirement savings plans to higher education employees, is serving as the national presenting sponsor of the NFF Hall of Fame On-Campus Salutes. The salutes are one component of a multi-year initiative between the two organizations to celebrate the scholar-athlete ideal and a joint commitment to higher education. At the start of the 2014 season, Fidelity became the presenting sponsor of the William V. Campbell Trophy, college football’s premier scholar-athlete award, which will be presented for the 26th time in 2015. Other highlights of the sponsorship include Fidelity becoming the first presenting sponsor of the organization’s prestigious NFF National Scholar-Athlete Awards and helping launch the NFF Faculty Salutes Initiative, which recognizes the contributions of the faculty athletics representatives around the country.

About Fidelity Investments
Fidelity’s goal is to make financial expertise broadly accessible and effective in helping people live the lives they want. With assets under administration of $5.1 trillion, including managed assets of $2.0 trillion as of August 31, 2015, we focus on meeting the unique needs of a diverse set of customers: helping more than 24 million people invest their own life savings, nearly 20,000 businesses manage employee benefit programs, as well as providing nearly 10,000 advisory firms with technology solutions to invest their own clients’ money. Privately held for nearly 70 years, Fidelity employs 42,000 associates who are focused on the long-term success of our customers. For more information about Fidelity Investments, visit

About The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame\
Founded in 1947 with early leadership from General Douglas MacArthur, legendary Army coach Earl "Red" Blaik and immortal journalist Grantland Rice, The National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame is a non-profit educational organization that runs programs designed to use the power of amateur football in developing scholarship, citizenship and athletic achievement in young people. With 120 chapters and 12,000 members nationwide, NFF programs include, the College Football Hall of Fame in Atlanta, The William V. Campbell Trophy presented by Fidelity Investments, annual scholarships of more than $1.3 million and a series of initiatives to honor the legends of the past and inspire the leaders of the future. NFF corporate partners include the Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl, Fidelity Investments, Herff Jones, New York Athletic Club, Pasadena Tournament of Roses, PrimeSport, SKP, the Sports Business Journal and Under Armour. Learn more at

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