The South Carolina Football Hall of Fame will enshrine five new inductees.
Former South Carolina defensive end John Abraham, former Clemson tight end Dwight Clark, former Citadel standout Paul Maguire, former Lower Richland star and Super Bowl champion Richard Seymour, and former Georgia Tech star Clay Matthews have been selected for this year’s class.
Abraham played for the Gamecocks from 1996 to 1999. While in Columbia, the former Lamar athlete would tally 23.5 sacks in his career and earn All-SEC honors during his senior year. Abraham was drafted by the New York Jets in 2000 and played 15 years in the NFL. As a pro, Abraham collected 133 sacks, 48.5 forced fumbles, and earned a Pro Bowl appearance in 2013.
Clark, known for “The Catch,” played at Clemson from 1975 to 1978. As a Tiger, Clark averaged 17.3 yards per catch and went on to be drafted by the San Francisco 49ers. During his NFL career, Clark had 508 catches for 6,750 yards and 48 touchdowns. Following his playing career, Clark served as general manager for the 49ers and the Cleveland Browns.
Seymour, a two-time All-SEC first-team selection, opted to play at Georgia following his days with the Diamond Hornets. During his time in Athens, Seymour totaled 233 tackles, 26 tackles for loss, and 10 sacks. Seymour went on to be selected in the 2001 NFL Draft as the sixth overall pick. He would play eight seasons with the Patriots and four seasons with the Oakland Raiders.
Maguire played tight end and punter for The Citadel. In 1956, Maguire was named the Southern Conference Freshman of the Year. Three years later, he’d capture the SoCon Player of the Year award. Maguire was drafted in the first round of the AFL Draft in 1960. He’d play 10 years in the league and three AFL titles.
Matthews, this year’s legacy inductee, graduated from Charleston High before making his mark at Georgia Tech. He started for the Yellow Jackets for three years before playing in the NFL for the 49ers. After his rookie year, Matthews became a paratrooper and played three more years. Matthews is the grandfather of current NFL players, Clay III and Jake Matthews. Matthews died in March 2017 at the age of 88.
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