Tony Romo is now a member of a very elite group. On Monday, it was announced that the former Dallas Cowboys quarterback and current NFL analyst for CBS Sports was named to the College Football Hall of Fame Class of 2021. He joins a class that features 11 players and two coaches.
Fans found out that Romo made the College Football Hall of Fame on Sunday night during the Chicago Bears vs. New Orleans Saints playoff game. Jim Nantz told Romo he's a member of the Hall of Fame, but Romo admitted he knew already as he got his official Hall of Fame invitation one day prior.
Jim Nantz congratulates Tony Romo on making the College Football Hall of Fame Class of 2021 👏👏👏 pic.twitter.com/ftZPRSG6Go— NFLonCBS (@NFLonCBS) January 11, 2021
"That ball actually came to me yesterday, Jim," Romo said. "And my kids grabbed it and started playing with it. I was like, 'Hold on! Give me that back! I think that one might be important.'" The College Football Hall of Fame is located in Atlanta. Romo and the rest of the members of the 2021 class will be officially inducted on Dec. 7 with the 2020 Hall of Fame class, because the 2020 event was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Most fans remember Romo from his time with the Cowboys. However, the 40-year-old had a very memorable career at Eastern Illinois. From 1999 to 2002, Romo started in 33 games and threw for 7,816 yards and 82 touchdowns. During his senior year, Romo was a consensus All-American and won the Walter Payton Award, given to the best playing in the nation in the FCS. His No. 17 jersey is retired at Eastern Illinois.
"The winner of the 2002 Walter Payton Award as the top player in the Football Championship Subdivision (FCS), Tony Romo goes down as one of the greatest players in Eastern Illinois history," the National Football Foundation stated in a press release. He deservedly becomes the first Panther player to enter the College Football Hall of Fame.
The players that will be joining Romo in the College Football Hall of Fame are Harris Barton, David Fulcher, Dan Morgan, Carson Palmer, Kenneth Sims, C.J. Spiller, Darren Sproles, Aaron Taylor, Andre Tippett and Al Wilson. The coaches that have been selected are Rudy Hubbard of Florida A&M and Bob Stoops of Oklahoma.