ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A New Mexico college football legend is set to be inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.
Brian Urlacher is the only University of New Mexico player to be inducted into the Hall of Fame at an awards dinner in New York City Tuesday night.
“People don’t really know most of the players we’ve had there. We’ve had some really good players at UNM. To be the first guy to go in is a huge honor,” Urlacher said.
New Mexico was the only scholarship offer Urlacher received coming out of Lovington High School in 1996. Urlacher never expected what followed after.
“I wasn’t thinking about going anywhere beyond college, honestly, just to get there and get my school paid for,” said Urlacher. “Playing four years of football was a huge opportunity for me. No one from my hometown really got that opportunity. So it was amazing for me to get a chance to go there and then to have the success I did. I never would have saw that coming.”
At New Mexico, Urlacher played linebacker and a position called the “Lobo” which was a mix of safety and linebacker. He also played receiver and returned punts.
Urlacher led the nation in tackles his junior year with 178. He was also named consensus All American in 1999. UNM retired his jersey, 44, in 2013. He also has had a lot of success in his 13 year NFL career with the Chicago Bears.
The former Bears linebacker snagged rookie and defensive player of the year honors along with making the Pro Bowl eight times. Urlacher is hoping to enter Pro Football’s Hall of Fame on his first ballot and will find out in February.