Dementia hasn't sacked NFL patriarch's humor

The late Clay Matthews Sr. was named to the South Carolina Football Hall of Fame. File/Staff

Charleston native Clay Matthews Sr. and former Citadel star Paul Maguire join Richard Seymour, John Abraham and Dwight Clark in the 2018 class of the South Carolina Football Hall of Fame announced Thursday.

The men will be enshrined April 19 at the Embassy Suites at Verdae in Greenville.

Here’s a look at the 2018 inductees:

• Matthews graduated from Charleston High and played football at Georgia Tech. After a rookie season with the NFL's San Francisco 49ers in 1950, Matthews became a paratrooper for the U.S. Army during the Korean War. He then played three more season with the 49ers before retiring. He is the father of two former NFL players — Bruce Matthews and Clay Matthews Jr. — and the grandfather of current players Clay Matthews III and Jake Matthews. His two other grandkids, Kevin and Casey Matthews, also played in the NFL. Matthews died in Mount Pleasant on March 23, 2017 at the age of 88.

• Seymour, a Gadsden native, graduated from Hopkins Lower Richland High School. He was a star at Georgia before getting drafted sixth overall in 2001 by the New England Patriots. His 12-year NFL career included seven Pro Bowl selections, five All-Pro teams and three Super Bowl championships.

• Abraham was born in Timmonsville and played football at Lamar High. He holds the 200-meter and 100-meter dash records in the state, but it was his linebacker play that earned him a scholarship with the South Carolina Gamecocks. Abraham was drafted 13th overall in the 2000 draft by the New York Jets and played 15 seasons for three different teams. He finished his career with 133.5 sacks, five Pro bowl selections and four All-Pro nominations.

• Clark was inducted into the Clemson Hall of Fame in 1988 , 10 years after he left the school when he was drafted by the 49ers. He played eight seasons in the NFL, netting two Pro Bowls and All-Pro selections, and he won two Super Bowl rings with the Niners.

• Maguire played football at The Citadel from 1956-59 and was named Souther Conference Freshman of the Year and Player of the Year during his career. After college, Maguire played 10 years in the AFL as a punter and linebacker. He won three of the six AFL Championships he played in, and went on to do color commentary for NBC and ESPN.

Reach Derrek Asberry at 843-937-5517. Follow him on Twitter @DerrekAsberry

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