Former Temple coach Hardin named to College Football HOF

Former Temple coach Hardin named to College Football HOF
May 7, 2013, 12:45 pm
Share This Post

Former Temple coach Wayne Hardin was named to the College Football Hall of Fame on Tuesday.

The 86-year-old Hardin joins Colorado's Bill McCartney as one of only two coaches elected in the 2013 class.

In addition, 12 players join Hardin and McCartney in the Hall: North Carolina State RB Ted Brown, Arizona LB Teddy Bruschi, Wisconsin RB Ron Dayne, Nebraska QB Tommie Frazier, Texas DB Jerry Gray, Kentucky DE Steve Meilinger, Ohio State OT Orlando Pace, Oklahoma LB Rod Shoate, Michigan State LB Percy Snow, Miami QB Vinny Testaverde, Baylor QB Don Trull and Florida QB Danny Wuerffel.

The 14 new members, selected from a ballot of 77 candidates, will be officially inducted into the Hall at the National Football Foundation annual awards dinner on Dec. 10 in New York.

Hardin (1970-82) is now the third Temple coach to reach the Hall, joining Pop Warner (1933-38, inducted in 1951) and Ray Morrison (1940-48, inducted in 1954).

“This is a great day for Temple University,” Owls interim athletic director Kevin Clark said in a statement. “Wayne Hardin is not only a Hall of Fame football coach, but a Hall of Fame person. The entire Temple community is grateful that he has been selected for induction into the College Football Hall of Fame.”

Hardin began his head coaching career at Navy in 1959 and spent six seasons with the program. As coach of the Midshipmen, he amassed a 38-22-2 record, led his team to the Orange Bowl in 1960, Cotton Bowl in 1963, and coached the program's only two Heisman trophy winners in Joe Bellino (1960) and Roger Staubach (1963).

During his six years between college coaching stints, Hardin spent one season with the Philadelphia Bulldogs of the short-lived Continental Football League in 1966, leading the team to a league championship.

After joining the Owls in 1970, Hardin went on to become the winningest coach in Temple history, going 80-50-3 over 12 seasons.

From 1973-74, Hardin's Owls amassed Division I's longest winning active steak of 14 games, prompting Sports Illustrated to write a piece entitled, "When Playing Temple, Pray" (see The700Level).

Hardin's best season at Temple came in 1979, when his team went 10-2 and defeated Cal in the Garden State Bowl. To that point, it was Temple's only bowl victory and just second bowl appearance. The Owls would not return to a bowl game for 30 years -- the 2009 Eagle Bank Bowl -- and not win another for 32 (the 2011 Gildan New Mexico Bowl).

Hardin's '79 team remains the only team in Temple history to finish with 10 wins and a postseason ranking. The Owls ended the year No. 17 in both polls.

Hardin would retire three years later, in 1982, failing to earn to a winning record in his final three seasons.

In order to be eligible for the ballot, coaches must have been active for a minimum of 10 years and 100 games and have a winning percentage of 60 percent. Hardin finished his coaching career 118-74-5 overall (61.2 percent).

Latest News