Before Brian Urlacher turned in a Hall of Fame-caliber career with the Bears, he was doing something similar in college, and he will be honored for his college career with induction into the College Football Hall of Fame.
The National Football Foundation and the College Football Hall of Fame announced the 2017 class on Monday, and Urlacher was among the names.
Urlacher, who starred with the Bears for 13 seasons, played defensive back at the University of New Mexico from 1996 to 1999. He's the first member of that program to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Urlacher was the Mountain West Conference Player of the Year as a senior in 1999. That year he registered 154 tackles, forced five fumbles and recovered another three. The year prior Urlacher led the country with 178 tackles.
Former Bears running back Adrian Peterson was also inducted after a record-setting career at Georgia Southern where he accumulated 7,590 rushing yards, the most in Division-I history. The FCS offensive player of the year award was re-named after Peterson in 2014.
Urlacher and Peterson are joined in the 2017 class by other former college stars in Marshall Faulk and Peyton Manning. Other members of the 2017 class include Kirk Gibson — who starred as a football player at Michigan State before his noteworthy career in Major League Baseball — former USC quarterback Matt Leinart and former Florida and South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier.