Of all the players in Air Force football history, Scott Thomas might evoke the most passion.
He might not have been as dominant as Chad Hennings or finished in the Heisman Trophy voting like Dee Dowis, but Thomas was tough, exciting and fun to watch. Fans will talk lovingly about the big hits, the big plays, and how he parachuted out of his malfunctioning F-16 fighter jet over Iraq during the Gulf War and survived.
Now, Thomas is a hall of famer.
Thomas was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame on Tuesday, becoming the fourth Falcon to get that honor. Offensive tackle Brock Strom and defensive tackle Hennings were joined by longtime Falcons coach Fisher DeBerry last year. Thomas’ induction makes it two hall of famers in two years for Air Force.
Thomas played for the Falcons from 1982-85. He had 221 tackles, 10 interceptions and averaged 28.8 yards per kickoff return. He was an All-American in 1985, and returned a punt, kickoff and interception for a touchdown on a team that went 12-1 and finished the season ranked fifth in the country. He was also part of four wins over Notre Dame and helped Air Force go 7-1 against Army and Navy.
Thomas logged 4,100 hours of military flight time after graduation from the academy. He currently works at Sheppard Air Force Base in Wichita Falls, Texas, training pilots.