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Bennie Blades


Horation Benedict Blades

Inducted 2006

Date of Birth



Ft. Lauderdale, FL


University of Miami (1984-1987)


In high school Bennie Blades was better known as a track athlete as he was invited to the 1984 Olympic trials in the 400 meters. In his freshman season at Miami, he was a reserve cornerback and special teams player before he became a starter at free safety as a sophomore. He led the team with four interceptions and returned two picks for scores. The following year, he was a finalist for the Jim Thorpe Award as he led the nation with ten interceptions. He also began to be noticed for his ability as an open field tackler as he had 16 tackles against Oklahoma. He gained consensus All-America status. In his senior season, he was able to claim the national championship that he just missed the previous year in a season ending loss to Penn State. He also gained some individual honors in winning the Thorpe Award and became a unanimous All-America. The national championship run was saved early in the season when Blades recovered a fumble deep in 'Canes territory in a one point victory over Florida State. Over his career Blades had 19 interceptions for 305 return yards along with making 286 tackles. Coach Jimmy Johnson called him "the best player at his position that I ever coached." With the pros he was the third overall selection in the 1988 draft. He spent nine seasons with the Detroit Lions and two with Seattle.


Height 6'0

Weight 215

Career Highlights

  • 1987 Thorpe Award Winner
  • 1987 Unanimous All-America
  • 1986 Consensus All-America
  • 1986 Led nation in interceptions
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