A longtime Dallas Cowboys guard from the 1990s received a big honor for what he did before he even got to the Cowboys. Offensive lineman Nate Newton was inducted into the Black College Football Hall of Fame Class of 2022. “The Kitchen” was with the Cowboys for a whopping 13 seasons. But before that, he spent his collegiate football years at Florida A&M University.
Newton is now the seventh Rattler to be inducted into the group in Atlanta. The Black College Football HoF began in October of 2009 as a way to honor the greatest football players from Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). Although it is in Atlanta now, this hall is set to soon have a new home in Canton where the Pro Football Hall of Fame lives.
At FAMU, the guard played under legendary coach Rudy Hubbard and was part of the school’s famous 1979 victory over the Miami Hurricanes. After his tenure at FAMU from 1979-1982, the Rattler went undrafted but ended up signing with the Washington Football Team. After not making Washington’s roster, he headed to the USFL, which ultimately ended up dissolving.
That’s when he ended up with the Cowboys, where he would go on to get six Pro Bowl nods and help the franchise win three Super Bowl rings. But he wouldn’t have gotten there without his collegiate days. Here’s what he had to say at his induction:
"“I’m humbled. This is something special. What makes me feel good is my teammates were there, my sons, my brother and sister. It was Father’s Day. There was a Juneteenth parade across the street. I had everybody that was somebody to me there. What more can I ask for? How much better could this weekend have been? All I needed was Jesus to come in and resurrect this thing and take us out of here.”"
Legendary Cowboys offensive lineman Nate Newton gets inducted into the Black College Football Hall of Fame
Newton isn’t the only Cowboys player who’s received this honor. He joins Ed “Too Tall” Jones, “Bullet” Bob Hayes, and Thomas “Hollywood” Henderson.
At his induction last weekend, Newton was joined by former teammates and other Cowboys legends such as Troy Aikman, Daryl Johnston, Deion Sanders, Tony Tolbert, and Mark Stepnoski. Without Newton and his leadership on the ever-famous “Great Wall of Dallas” in the 1990s, Aikman and Emmitt Smith wouldn’t have been able to have the great success they had as offensive players.
The NFL recognized that with his Pro Bowl and All-Pro selections. In fact, the only Cowboys offensive linemen with more Pro Bowl nods are Larry Allen (10), Tyron Smith (8), and Zack Martin (7).
Despite his clear success at both the collegiate and pro levels, Newton remained humble at the induction ceremony.
"“I don’t see myself as some great player. I see myself as a good guy and someone you can depend on. Things just keep happening for the good. I’m living life. I am a Dallas Cowboy. That is where it began and ended for me.”"
Hopefully, the next honor for “The Kitchen” will be when Jerry Jones decides to add him to the Ring of Honor. If anyone knows anything about waiting too long for that moment, it’s his former coach Jimmy Johnson.