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#1996 Charles Haley
Position: Football
Hometown: Gladys, Va.
High School: William Campbell High School
Alma Mater: James Madison
Graduating Year: 1986
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Charles Haley made believers of more than a few skeptics as an outstanding collegiate and professional football player. Overlooked by the so-called major schools in the recruiting process, he enrolled at James Madison University where he was an instant standout and became the school's initial first-team Division I-AA All-America choice in 1985. Not selected in the professional draft until the fourth round by the San Francisco 49ers, he became one of the top pass rushers in the National Football League and the first player to be a member of five Super Bowl championship teams.

A native of Gladys, Va., and a graduate of William Campbell High School, Haley completed his collegiate career as JMU's all-time leading tackler with 506. He received Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Rookie of the Week honors (players from 25 schools were eligible) in two of his first three college games, and he finished his freshman season ranked second in tackles for JMU's 8-3 team. Among the first three games of Haley's college career was JMU's 21-17 win at the University of Virginia in 1982.

Haley took part in 85 tackles as a freshman in 1982, 143 as a sophomore, 147 as a junior and 131 as a senior. In addition to his All-America recognition, he also was the Roanoke Times & World-News' Virginia Defensive Player of the Year in 1985.

Haley started his career as an outside linebacker. He moved to inside linebacker in 1983 and returned to outside linebacker midway through 1985. In a 21-6 win in 1985 over eventual national champion Georgia Southern, Haley blocked a punt to set up a touchdown, caused a fumble, had a quarterback sack and deflected three passes.

San Francisco surprised many NFL observers by making Haley their fourth-round choice in the 1986 draft of college players, but the investment obviously was a good one. He played on the 49ers' Super Bowl championship teams after the 1988 and 1989 seasons and played for victorious Super Bowl teams with the Dallas Cowboys after the 1992, 1993 and 1995 seasons. He played in several Pro Bowl games, and in 1990 while with San Francisco was the National Football Conference's Defensive Player of the Year.