Before he came to the Kansas City Chiefs in the spring of 1989, the Alabama Crimson Tide All-American, was a terror at the college level. In three seasons in the SEC, he netted 52 career sacks and those numbers vaulted him to the top of the NFL draft.
For those efforts, later this year Derrick Thomas will take his rightful, and long overdue place, in the College Football Hall of Fame - where he'll be joined by former Kansas City Chiefs Left Tackle, Willie Roaf.
DT was a unique blend of athlete. Though he hated to practice and loved the NFL rock star life, there was no denying that when the game was on the line – he always showed up.
Blessed with enormous talent, flair for the dramatic and the singular passion to terrorize opposing quarterbacks, DT became a legend in Kansas City. His wide-eyed smile and huge heart off the field was as mesmerizing to the fan base as his persona on the field where he created havoc on every snap.
Though his life ended tragically after complications arose after a car accident some 14 years ago, there is no doubt that DT left his mark in a Kansas City Chiefs uniform. He will forever be honored, remembered and held to the highest of standards as one of the greatest players this organization every drafted.
The addition of his membership into the College Football Hall of Fame does complete his marvelous football career. His charitable endeavors with the Third and Long Foundation and the gifts he showered to strangers that were rarely documented make us all a bit sad that he's no longer around to reap the accolades the Chiefs nation still has in their collective hearts for DT.
For yours truly, that spent time with Derrick and since his passing with his family, I an say without a doubt that he was the most human football player I've ever been around. His heart was as big as the moon away from the game and his drive to succeed on the field was remarkable to see – especially on third down.
With his induction into the College Football Hall of Fame, he has come full circle in regards to his personal triumphs away from the game. With inductions into the cherished Halls of the NFL and College ranks, DT's life and career will be forever remembered.
WARPAINT ILLUSTRATED MESSAGE BOARDS:
DT Gets College Hall of Fame induction.
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