Former CFL QB Michael Bishop elected to College Football Hall of Fame

Photo: AP/Frank Gunn

Former CFL quarterback Michael Bishop has been elected to the College Football Hall of Fame, it was announced on Monday.

The six-foot-one, 215-pound passer played two seasons at Kansas State (1997-98) following a transfer from Blinn Junior College. He completed 50.8 percent of his passes for 4,401 yards, 36 touchdowns, and 12 interceptions and ran for 1,314 yards and 23 touchdowns over 25 games with the Wildcats, posting a 22-3 record.

As a senior, Bishop was voted a consensus All-American and All-Big 12 Conference selection and won Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year. He also finished second in voting for the Heisman Trophy behind Ricky Williams. Coincidentally, Bishop and Williams later became teammates in the CFL.

“I received the most unexpected blessing ever! I’m so grateful and honored to be apart of such an elite group of athletes,” tweeted Bishop on Tuesday. “My parents are definitely smiling down on me and saying look at my boy!”

Bishop was selected in the seventh round of the 1999 NFL Draft by the New England Patriots. He attempted just nine passes over two seasons with the team before being released in August 2001 and finding his way north.

The native of Galveston, Texas signed with the Toronto Argonauts in April 2002 and spent seven seasons with the team, throwing for 6,513 yards, 44 touchdowns, and 44 interceptions.

Bishop shared starting duties through most of his tenure with the Argos, sharing the backfield with quarterbacks including Damon Allen, Reggie Slack, and Kerry Joseph. His lone postseason start came in the East Final in 2007, which Toronto lost to the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

Toronto traded Bishop to the Saskatchewan Roughriders partway through the 2008 season in exchange for a conditional draft pick. He threw for 2,224 yards, seven touchdowns, and 12 interceptions before being released at the end of the season.

Bishop signed with Winnipeg in July 2009 and threw for 3,035 yards, 15 touchdowns, and 20 interceptions. He was released the following off-season before brief final stints with the Calgary Stampeders and Blue Bombers in 2011.

The other members of this year’s College Football Hall of Fame class include Tennessee defensive back Eric Berry, USC running back Reggie Bush, Syracuse defensive end Dwight Freeney, Iowa offensive tackle Robert Gallery, Oregon running back LaMichael James, Texas linebacker Derrick Johnson, Montana State defensive tackle Bill Kollar, Boston College linebacker Luke Kuechly, Missouri receiver Jeremy Maclin, New Mexico receiver Terance Mathis, Miami offensive tackle Bryant McKinnie, Virginia Texh defensive lineman Corey Moore, Notre Dame linebacker Michael Stonebreaker, Florida quarterback Tim Tebow, Wisconsin defensive back Troy Vincent, Villanova running back Brian Westbrook, and Memphis running back DeAngelo Williams.

Bishop is just the fourth Kansas State player ever to be named to the College Football Hall of Fame alongside linebacker Mark Simoneau, linebacker Gary Spani, and running back Darren Sproles. He has previously been added to Kansas State’s Football Ring of Honour, the Kansas State Athletics Hall of Fame, and the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame.

The induction ceremony will take place on Dec. 5, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nev.