NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee Titans announced Wednesday it will retire Steve McNair’s No. 9 jersey when the team hosts the Indianapolis Colts in their home opener on Sept. 15.
McNair will be one of two players honored that day along with teammate Eddie George. The duo becomes the seventh and eighth players to have their numbers retired in the history of the Titans/Oilers franchise.
The Titans — then the Houston Oilers — drafted McNair out of Alcorn with the third overall pick in the 1995 NFL Draft. He was named the league’s co-MVP (with Peyton Manning) in 2003, earned three Pro Bowl nods (2000, 2003, 2005), and in 1999 led the Titans to their only Super Bowl appearance. McNair spent the last two seasons of his NFL career with the Baltimore Ravens.
In his 13-year NFL career, McNair threw for 31,304 yards and 174 touchdowns while completing 60.1 percent of his passes in his career. He played in 161 games.
A four-year letter winner at Alcorn, McNair became the school’s all-time career passing leader (14,496), all-time career completions leader (958), all-time career passing touchdowns leader (119), third all-time in career rushing yards (2,357), first in single-season passing yards with 5,377 in 1994, first in single-season passing touchdowns with 47 in 1994, first in single-season completions with 356 in 1994, first in single-game passing yards with 587 vs. Southern in 1994, first in single-game passing touchdowns with 8 vs. Chattanooga in 1994, first in single-game completions with 52 against Youngstown State in 1994.
McNair guided the Braves in becoming 1992 SWAC Champions, 1992 FCS Playoffs, 1994 SWAC Champions, and 1994 FCS Playoffs.
Additionally, Alcorn was 13-0 at Jack Spinks-Marino Casem Stadium during his tenure and led the FCS in home attendance average (26,203) in 1994.
In the SWAC, McNair is the only player in league history to be a four-time SWAC Offensive Player of the Year (1991-94) winner. He was a four-time All-Conference First-Team selection, 1991 SWAC Freshman of the Year and eight-time SWAC Player of the Week winner in 1994 which is the most by anyone in a single season in league history.
Nationally, McNair is the FCS All-Time Passing Leader (14,496), 1992 Passing Champion (4,057), 1994 Passing champion (5,799) and FCS All-Time Total Yards Leader (16, 823). He was both a 1994 NCAA First-Team All-American and 1994 American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) First-Team All-American.
McNair won the 1994 Walter Payton Award for being the top player in I-AA. He also earned the 1994 Eddie Robinson Trophy for being the top HBCU player in the country. McNair was a finalist for the 1994 Heisman Trophy and finished third in the voting.
After four years, the Braves were 30-12-2 overall with McNair at quarterback and 23-4-1 SWAC.
McNair graduated from Alcorn in the spring of 1995 with a Bachelor’s degree in Physical Education from the School of Education. He was a two-time Dean’s Scholar recipient.
“Air II” McNair is the younger brother of current Alcorn head coach Fred “Air” McNair.
Courtesy: Alcorn State Athletics