The most decorated player in the history of college football, Charlie Ward won literally every award he was eligible for as a senior quarterback on Florida State’s 1993 National Championship team. In addition, Ward was the sparkplug on three Seminole NCAA Tournament basketball teams.
A native of nearby Thomasville, Ga., Ward became Florida State’s first Heisman Trophy winner in 1993 after completing 69.5 percent of his passes for 3,032 yards with 27 touchdowns and only four interceptions. He also won the Davey O’Brien and Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Awards and was named Walter Camp Player of the Year and Toyota Leader of the Year. He is only the second college football player ever to win the Sullivan Award given annually to the nation’s top amateur athlete. Ward still owned 14 FSU football records at the time of his induction.
On the basketball court, Ward pushed the Seminoles to the brink of the 1993 Final Four, falling one game shy. He also started on FSU’s Sweet 16 team in 1992 and hit the game-winning shot in its Metro Conference Tournament Championship game win over Louisville in 1991. Ward still holds Seminole basketball records for steals in a game (9) and career (236) and ranks sixth all-time in assists (396).
At the time of his induction, Ward had just finished his fifth season in the NBA as the starting point guard for the New York Knicks. He helped his team to the NBA finals in 1999. Ward remains an active member of his home community in Thomasville, running various youth clinics and sports camps during the summer.