June 19, 2014

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Two of the very best players to play their respective positions at Ohio State University – quarterback Troy Smith and cornerback Antoine Winfield – have been elected into the Ohio State Sports Hall of Fame and will be honored this fall during weekend celebrations centered around the game against Cincinnati on Sept. 27.

Smith and Winfield are part of a 13-member Ohio State Sports Hall of Fame class that includes two other football players: Bob Vogel (1959-62) and Ralph Wolf (1935-37). The class also includes hockey player Tessa Bonhamme, women’s basketball coach Nancy Darsch, fencer Boaz Ellis, track and field performer Rosalind Goodwin, golfer Ralph Guarasci, wrestling coach Russ Helickson, synchronized swimmer Becky Kim, track and field performer Tami Smith and tennis player Jeremy Wurtzman.

Smith: Seventh Heisman Winner
Troy Smith won the 2006 Heisman Trophy in a landslide – his victory total was the second-largest margin of victory – and he was a consensus All-American as a senior after leading Ohio State to a 12-0 regular season and to a national title game appearance. He closed an exceptional career at Ohio State – one that included a 25-3 record as a starting quarterback – by throwing for 5,720 yards while completing 62.7 percent of his passes (second-best at Ohio State) with 54 touchdowns (third behind Bobby Hoying and Joe Germaine). His career passing efficiency mark of 157.1 is a school record.

Smith led Ohio State to Big Ten championships in 2005 and 2006. In 2005 he threw for 2,282 yards with 16 touchdowns and only four interceptions, and in 2006 he threw for 2,542 yards with a school-record 30 touchdowns against just six interceptions. His most impressive statistic, though: he is one of only two Ohio State quarterbacks to post a 3-0 mark against Michigan. In each game he topped 300 yards of total offense and he accounted for a nine touchdowns and 857 yards passing in the three victories.

Smith was drafted in the fifth round of the 2007 NFL Draft by the Baltimore Ravens. He played three seasons with the Ravens and one with the San Francisco 49ers. He is currently in his second season playing for the Montreal Alouettes of the Canadian Football League.

Winfield: The First…
Antoine Winfield was a two-time All-American for the Buckeyes, including a consensus choice as a senior in 1998. He was the first Buckeye to win the Thorpe Award as the nation’s outstanding cornerback, and his Ohio State career is punctuated by a number of other firsts: he was the first non-linebacker to record at least 200 career solo tackles; he was the first defensive back to be voted team MVP (following the 1997 season); and he was the first cornerback in recorded history to lead the team in tackles when he did so in 1997.

A two-time all-Big Ten Conference selection, Winfield closed his career with 278 tackles, including 224 solo stops, 22 tackles-for-loss, 29 pass break-ups and three interceptions. He played in 50 career games and started 29 times. As a senior in 1998, he was one of five finalists for the Football News Defensive Player of the Year Award. He totaled 75 tackles that year, including nine solo tackles in a win over Michigan. Winfield was team MVP as a junior after totaling 100 tackles, 12 pass break-ups and two interceptions. He had 82 solo tackles, the fifth-highest solo tackle total in school history.

A first-round draft pick of the Buffalo Bills in 1999, the hard-hitting Winfield was a five-time Pro Bowl selection, playing five seasons with the Bills and nine with the Minnesota Vikings from 2004-2012. He retired from the NFL after the 2013 season.

Wolf & Vogel: Part of Storied Chapters
Ralph Wolf played center on offense and along the defensive line for Ohio State teams coached by Francis Schmidt between 1935-37. He was a two-year Varsity O letter winner, a two-time team MVP (1936 and 1937) and he was also a first-team All-American and a team captain for Schmidt’s 1937 team that posted a 6-2 record and was second in the Big Ten Conference with a 5-1 mark. Wolf took part in three of the four consecutive shutout victories over Michigan between 1934-37. It was this stretch of wins that led to the storied “Gold Pants” tradition at Ohio State after Schmidt had said about the rivals to the north: “they put their pants on one leg at a time just like everybody else.”

Vogel played for Ohio State from 1959-1962 and he was a three-year Varsity O letterwinner (1960, 1961 and 1962). He was team captain in 1962. Considered one of college football’s best offensive tackles, Vogel was an outstanding player for Woody Hayes’ teams that went 7-2 in 1960, 8-0-1 in 1961 and 6-3 in 1962. The 1961 team won the national championship, as voted on by the Football Writers’ Association of America, as well as the Big Ten title with a 6-0 mark. After a 7-7 tie with Texas Christian to open the season, the Buckeyes won eight consecutive games and capped the national championship season with a rousing, 50-20, victory over Michigan. This was the game when Hayes went for a two-point conversion with three seconds to play, incensing the Michigan fans and adding another storied page in the epic rivalry.