From walk-on to the NFL, Crigler performed at a high level on the field and into the classroom for Racer Football
Murray State Athletics is proud to introduce the class of 2021 of the MSU Hall of Fame. Before the end of July, the eight members of the 2021 class will be released in alphabetical order, one day at a time. Check GoRacers.com and the social media channels of the Racers as we reveal the 2021 class.
The MSU Hall of Fame is proud to select former Racer football lineman, Eric Crigler, who was an All-Ohio Valley Conference and All-America lineman for the Racers from 1985-89.
Crigler is the fourth of the class of eight to be revealed as he joins Coach Tevester Anderson (men’s basketball 1998-03), Shane Andrus (football 2000-02) and Martyn Brewer (track & field 1974-78).
A walk-on from Louisville’s Ballard High School where he played for Coach Bobby Redman. Crigler’s first contact with a person from Murray State University was assistant coach Bud Foster. From there, Crigler set the gold standard for Racer offensive line play that led him to being a part of Murray State’s Ohio Valley Conference championship in 1986 and eventually to being draft into the National Football League by the Cincinnati Bengals.
Crigler was a big part of the MSU offense under Coach Frank Beamer even though he never caught a pass or took the ball and ran with it. What he did was anchor the offensive line that produced productive tailbacks including Willie Cannon, Rodney Payne and Bill Bird. Crigler also protected MSU Hall of Fame quarterback, Michael Proctor.
An excellent student, Crigler came to MSU on an academic scholarship. He racked up the same impressive record in the class room as he did on the gridiron. In 1989, he was awarded one of 25 NCAA Football Post-Graduate Scholarships, just the second Racer to receive it. The same year he earned the College Sports Information Directors Academic All-America Award and the OVC Scholar Athlete Award.
After earning his undergrad degree from Murray State University, Crigler went on to earn an MBA in Finance from the Indiana University Kelley School of Business, with honors. He spent his career working as a Portfolio Manager/Analyst with Strong Capital Management in Milwaukee and opened his own firm Skyhawk Capital Management in Memphis. Crigler is currently serving Murray State as the chairman of the Board of Regents.
“I was excited and humbled by the news of my inclusion into the MSU Athletic Hall of Fame, an honor I never dreamed of when I arrived on campus as a walk-on player so many years ago,” Crigler said. “I have been truly blessed to cross paths with so many great coaches, amazing teammates, and the wonderful people of Murray State University, and I owe a debt of gratitude to them all. My life has been and continues to be greatly enhanced by my experience and association with Murray State University. Go Racers!”
Eric Crigler Notes
- Two-time All-OVC selection (1988-89) at offensive tackle.
- 1989 Associated Press All-America.
- Member of the Murray State 1986 OVC Championship Team.
- Named OVC Lineman of the Week three times.
- Started 31 games for MSU over three seasons.
- 1989 OVC Scholar-Athlete Award.
- 1989 MSU Board of Regents Resolution.
- 1989 MSU Athletic Director’s Character Award.
- 1989 MSU Iron Horse Award.
- Graduated Cum Laude at Murray State.
- 10th round draft selection by the Cincinnati Bengals.
- Spent more than a full season on Bengals roster (1990-91).
- Drafted as the 13th player in the 10th round, 261st overall
- World League of American Football – Ohio Glory (1992), Frankfurt Galaxy (1992)
MSU Hall of Fame Weekend
The 2021 class to the Murray State Hall of Fame will be honored at an induction dinner Nov. 12, at 6 p.m. at the CFSB Center. Tickets are $45 per person and can be purchased by visiting the CFSB Center ticket office between 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. Monday through Friday or by calling 270-809-3000
The Murray State Hall of Fame was launched in 1965 with an inaugural class consisting of Harlan Brodie (Football, 1927-1930), Joe Fulks (Basketball, 1941-42), Marshall Gage