Welcome to "Second Guess" Tuesday.

Opinions are like grass. They just keep growing. Here's one particularly strong one.

>> They are the "Forgotten Ones."

Offensive linemen and defensive tackles seem to have fallen into that category as far as Marshall's Athletic Hall of Fame committee is concerned.

Not that 2018 inductees Josh Davis and Dewey Klein aren't deserving candidates. They most certainly are.

But guess what?

There are three offensive linemen and a defensive tackle that should have been inducted years ago.

Remember Steve Sciullo, Nate McPeek, Jamie Wilson and Girardie Mercer? Rings some bells, huh?

Yet, none of that quartet is members of MU's Athletic Hall of Fame.

So, why are they the "Forgotten Ones"?

It's at least partially because there are very few statistics for offensive linemen and defensive tackles. Other than career starts and team victories, that's about it.

That's also why the MU Athletic Hall of Fame is so heavy in skilled players. In the modern era, the inductees have included 11 quarterbacks, eight running backs, eight wide receivers, eight defensive backs and seven linebackers.

Sure, there have been five offensive linemen inducted. They include Chris Deaton, Phil Ratliff, Aaron Ferguson, Dan Wells and John Wade. But notice what those five have in common. They played before Marshall made the jump to NCAA Division I-A (now FBS) in 1997.

In the 21 years since then?

Not one.

And it's even worse for defensive tackles. In the modern era, there's only one inductee - Billy Lyon.

So, who has been forgotten?

For starters, Sciullo. The 6-foot-6, 300-pound left tackle started 52 consecutive games for Marshall in the late '90s and early 2000s. Remember when Sciullo and Steve Perretta carried quarterback Byron Leftwich down the field in the Rubber Bowl, so he could keep playing against Akron despite a fractured tibia?

Then, Sciullo was selected in the fourth round of the 2003 NFL Draft by the Indianapolis Colts. He started 13 games for the Colts as a rookie, becoming only the fourth offensive lineman in Colts' history to start the season opener at a rookie.

The next season, Sciullo actually played in Super Bowl XXXIX for the Philadelphia Eagles. He finished his NFL career with Carolina.

Next, there's McPeek from nearby Russell, Ky. He was the rarest of commodities, starting at right offensive tackle as a true freshman. He also started 52 consecutive games at Marshall.

McPeek was a first-team selection on the Mid-American Conference all-league team as a sophomore in 2001. He was first-team All-MAC twice in his career. He also was a member of two MAC championship teams and three bowl champions.

And don't forget Wilson. The 6-6, 300-pound Virginia native started 44 games at Marshall. He was a senior starter on Marshall's unbeaten I-AA national championship team in 1996.

Then, Wilson became one of only two undrafted free agents to make Carolina's NFL roster in 1997. He ended up playing three years in the league with the Panthers and Green Bay.

Finally, there's Mercer. The Washington, D.C., native is the most dominant defensive tackle at Marshall since Billy Lyon. That says it all.

In 1998, Mercer made 13 tackles in one game against Ohio. He also had a 12-tackle performance the same season vs. Wofford.

He was a senior on the MU defense that devastated BYU, 21-3, in the Motor City Bowl.

All four are very deserving.

Let's hope the oversight is corrected soon.

Chuck Landon is a sports columnist for The Herald-Dispatch. Contact him at clandon@herald-dispatch.com.


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