Former Mountaineer defensive back Aaron Beasley and head coach Jim Carlen are representing West Virginia on the 2021 College Football Hall of Fame ballot.
Beasley (46), a 1995 consensus All-American, played defensive back in Morgantown from 1992-95. In four seasons he totaled 19 interceptions, three touchdowns and 38 pass breakups. Beasley’s best season came in 1994, when he intercepted 10 passes and broke up 15 more.
In those four years under Don Nehlen, Beasley was also a two-time All-Big East player. The Mountaineers went 28-17-2, including an 11-1 1993. WVU made the Sugar Bowl in 1993 and the Carquest Bowl in 1994.
Beasley went on to be selected in the third round of the 1996 NFL draft by the Jacksonville Jaguars and spent nine seasons in the league. He intercepted 24 passes between years with the Jaguars, Jets and Falcons.
Carlen was the head coach of the Mountaineers from 1966-1969. Playing in the Southern Conference his first two years, West Virginia went 8-9-3 overall, but were 6-0-1 in conference play, winning the Southern Conference championship in 1967. The Mountaineers went independent in 1968, going 7-3 that season and 10-1 in 1969, Carlen’s final season. That 1969 season also included a Peach Bowl victory over South Carolina. Overal, WVU went 25-13-3 under Carlen.
Carlen would go on to coach Texas Tech (1970-74) and South Carolina (1975-81), amassing a 107-69-6 overall coaching record. Carlen was inducted into the Texas Tech Athletics Hall of Honor in 2008 and passed away in 2012 at the age of 79.
There are 12 former Mountaineers currently enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame, including quarterback legend Major Harris, Pro Football Hall of Famer Sam Huff and coaches Bobby Bowden and Don Nehlen.
In total, the 2021 ballot contains 177 players and 40 coaches from all college football divisions. The ballot is voted upon by the over 12,000 members of the National Football Foundation and all living inductees. The 2021 class will be announced in January.