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Entering the Hall: Art Monk

5/14/2012

Before he became one of the most successful wide receivers in NFL history, Art Monk was a collegiate running back.

Monk, who was elected to the College Football Hall of Fame on Tuesday, looked like he might follow in the footsteps of great Syracuse running backs like Jim Brown and Ernie Davis. He rushed for more than 560 yards as a sophomore and a junior.

But Monk eventually proved even more valuable as a receiver, where he became an All-American as a senior in 1979. He set the school record for receptions in a game with 14 against Navy in 1977. He finished his career with 102 catches for 1,644 yards, plus 1,140 rushing yards. Monk ranks seventh on the Syracuse all-time list for career receptions and eighth in receiving yards.

Monk, of course, made an even bigger mark in the pros. A first-round pick in the 1980 NFL draft, he spent the bulk of his career with the Washington Redskins, where he won two Super Bowl rings.

The three-time Pro Bowler became the NFL’s all-time leader in receptions with 820 in 1992 and was the first wide receiver in the NFL to eclipse 900 career catches. He also set an NFL record with a streak of 183 games with a reception.

Monk was elected into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2008. Now, he becomes Syracuse's 18th player or coach to be enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame.