Former USC Lineman Bruce Matthews Voted Into Pro Football Hall Of Fame
Feb. 3, 2007
Former USC All-American and NFL All-Pro offensive lineman Bruce Matthews was elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame today (Feb. 3).
He will be inducted in ceremonies on Aug. 4 and 5 in Canton, Ohio.
He becomes the 11th Trojan player--more than any other school--in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, joining Marcus Allen, Red Badgro, Frank Gifford, Ronnie Lott, Ron Mix, Anthony Munoz, O.J. Simpson, Lynn Swann, Willie Wood and Ron Yary. Former USC assistant coaches Al Davis, Joe Gibbs and Mel Hein also are in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Matthews was the most durable offensive lineman in football history. The 1982 consensus All-American guard started for 3 seasons (1980-82) at Troy and even started once late in his 1979 true freshman campaign. Twice an All-Pac-10 first teamer (1981-82), he captained the Trojans as a 1982 senior while winning the Pac-10's Morris Trophy. He was selected to play in the 1983 Hula Bowl.
A 1983 first round draft pick of the Houston Oilers, he played every offensive line position during his 19 years (1983-2001) with the team (which became the Tennessee Titans), including appearing in Super Bowl XXXIV. The 14-time Pro Bowler and 9-time All-Pro played more NFL games (296) than any non-kicker in history and never missed a game because of injury.
In his college and pro career, he blocked for 6 runners who rushed for 1,000 yards in a season. He was the third member of his family to play in the NFL, along with father Clay Sr. and brother (and fellow Trojan) Clay Jr.
Matthews, who was inducted into the USC Athletic Hall of Fame in 2005, now owns a construction company in Houston.
Also voted into the 2007 class of the Pro Football Hall of Fame today were Michael Irvin, Thurman Thomas, Roger Wehrli, Charlie Sanders and Gene Hickerson. Matthews was the only player in this class to be elected in his first year of eligibility.