The Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor- A Tribute To Its Legends
The NFL Dallas Cowboys have been dubbed “America’s Team”. Their consistent high performance, over a span of more than 30 years, has made the team a fan favorite not only in the state of Texas and the United States but internationally, as well. Along with their great success on the field, the Dallas Cowboys are just as successful off the field and are considered one of the most valuable sports teams in North America. At the heart of the Cowboys great success is their play on and off the field, and the individuals who have contributed to that play.
Through its franchise history, the Dallas Cowboys have had a number of all-stars whose skills and achievements have contributed to Dallas Cowboys history. Endless players have donned the single star and blue and white jerseys of the Dallas Cowboys and taken to the field at Texas Stadium. As well, on the sidelines and behind the scenes many individuals have contributed to the great success of Cowboys football. Some of these individuals, whether it is their achievements on or off the field, have become legends of the Dallas Cowboys and legends of the game.
To honor their legends the Dallas Cowboys created the Ring of Honor. Individuals, who have made outstanding contributions to the Dallas Cowboys organization, whether they are former players, coaches or club officials, are honored in a ring around Texas Stadium, in Irving Texas, home of the Dallas Cowboys since 1971. Ring of Honor inductees are chosen by a Committee of One. Tex Schramm, originator, former president-general manager was the first committee of one and placed a high value not only on the talent but also the character of his choices. Since 1989 Ring of Honor decisions have rested with owner Jerry Jones.
November 23, 1975, designated Bob Lilly day in Dallas, was the beginning of the Ring of Honor and what was considered to be the first Dallas Cowboys reunion. During half time Bob Lilly’s name and jersey number were unveiled beneath the press box at Texas Stadium. Lilly, who after a 14 year career had retired from the NFL in July 1975, donned his Cowboy uniform once more and graciously accepted the honor along with a number of other gifts. Present at the historical event were Cowboys owner Clint Murchison, president-general manager Tex Schramm and Head Coach Tom Landry. As the first inductee, Lilly has had the added distinction of returning to present each new member in the Ring of Honor.
Being a Ring of Honor inductee is a coveted distinction that has truly been bestowed upon only the most deserving, just as its creator Tex Schramm had envisioned. Schramm himself was selected to the Ring of Honor, posthumously, in October 2003 a few months after his passing. An unprecedented three former Cowboys all-stars were simultaneously inducted into the Ring of Honor in September 2005. Part of three 1990s Super Bowl Championship Cowboys teams and known as the “The Triplets”, Troy Aikman, Michael Irvin and Emmitt Smith fittingly took their place in the Ring of Honor during half time ceremonies on Monday Night Football.
Today there are 17 inductees in the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor. Inductees include: Bob Lilly, Don Meredity, Don Perkins, Chuck Howley, Mel Renfro, Roger Staubach, Lee Roy Jordan, Tom Landry, Tony Dorsett, Randy White, Bob Hayes, Tex Schramm, Cliff Harrus, Rayfield White, Troy Aikman, Michael Irving, and Emmitt Smith.
Dallas Cowboys history is rich and storied. All of the inductees into the Dallas Cowboys Ring of Honor have contributed to the team and its character. Each one of them has left a legacy and become a legend of America’s Team and the National Football League.