The long wait for Champ Bailey is over. After an illustrious football career, the former Georgia star is part of the 2022 College Football Hall of Fame Class.
Already a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Bailey now has amassed almost every honor a star football player can aspire for. Moreover, Bailey didn’t receive the honor because his reputation precedes him — the star cornerback had the statistics to back it up.
In his time at Georgia, Bailey played both wide receiver and defensive back. On offense, he caught 59 passes for 978 yards and five touchdowns. Additionally, the Bulldogs star ran for 84 yards as well.
On the defensive side of the football, Bailey was similarly fantastic. The defensive back picked off eight passes throughout his time, and earned an All-SEC first-team selection as a sophomore.
After a tremendous stint at Georgia, Bailey became a star in the NFL. First, he began his Hall of Fame career with the Washington Football Team, then later blossoming as a member of the Denver Broncos. Bailey was a 12-time Pro Bowl selection, and three-time member of the First-team All-Pro squad.
Champ Bailey being honored couldn’t come on a better day, as his Georgia Bulldogs are readying to play for the 2022 College Football Playoff National Championship. If the school he loves can cap the day off by ending their title drought, Bailey will be over the moon.
Bailey on Georgia defense: ‘There’s so many elite players.’
Earlier this season, Champ Bailey sung the praises of the Georgia defense.
“I was able to see it up close and personal in Charlotte, the first game of the year,” Bailey said on The Paul Finebaum Show, referencing the 10-3 win over Clemson. “Impressive win, I see them flying around making plays. I think the thing that sticks out to me now is there’s so many of them.
“There’s so many elite players, and that’s what really comes to my attention is – I can’t just point to one guy and say he’s making a difference – there’s no Roquan Smith so to speak. There’s a few of them.”
To Champ Bailey’s point, the Georgia defense features several stars who make the defense special. Defensive tackle Jordan Davis anchors the defensive line in front of an experience linebacker group, Clemson transfer Derion Kendrick brings star power to the secondary with multiple edge rushers rotating through the lineup.
“It’s kind of baffling to sit back – how do you assemble this kind of talent and be able to please everybody,” said Bailey. “It looks like all the guys love playing together, winning definitely helps that but you can tell they prepare, they go hard in practice. These guys are fighting for positions so it shows up on Saturdays.”
Champ Bailey was right to be impressed with Georgia’s defense. Still, they’ll have to be more impressive than ever if they’re to win the national championship on Monday night.