Press release from Texas Tech Athletics:
LUBBOCK, Texas – Two-time Biletnikoff Award winner and NFL veteran Michael Crabtree earned a reputation for making career-defining plays inside Jones AT&T Stadium. Soon, Crabtree will see his name adorning the same stadium he starred in during a storied Red Raider career as he has been selected as the sixth member of the prestigious Texas Tech Ring of Honor.
Crabtree will join the likes of fellow Red Raider greats Donny Anderson, Gabe Rivera, E.J. Holub, Dave Parks and Zach Thomas when he is formally inducted into the Ring of Honor during the 2021 season. His future induction will be recognized next Saturday when Texas Tech hosts in-state rival Texas inside Jones AT&T Stadium.
“When you think of truly legendary wide receivers in college football history, you can’t help but think of Michael Crabtree,” Director of Athletics Kirby Hocutt said. “The Ring of Honor is reserved for the best of the best, and there is no question Michael Crabtree fits that criteria. We look forward to forever placing his name in Jones AT&T Stadium where he made so many memorable moments over his career.”
Crabtree, who was also part of Texas Tech’s 2020 Hall of Fame class that was announced earlier this summer, remains a prominent fixture in Texas Tech history after two record-setting seasons from 2007-08. The Red Raiders were a combined 20-6 during those two seasons, which was highlighted by an 11-2 campaign in 2008 that pushed Texas Tech to as high as No. 2 in the national rankings.
“It is a truly an honor to be named a member of the Ring of Honor,” Crabtree said. “In football, the ultimate goal is to have your name on the stadium. That was always my goal throughout my career. The Ring of Honor is an unbelievable special accomplishment. It’s a blessing for me, my kids, my family and all the teammates and coaches I played with.”
It didn’t take long for Crabtree to find the national spotlight as a redshirt freshman in 2007 as he set the Texas Tech single-season marks as well as the NCAA freshmen records for receptions (134), receiving yards (1,962) and receiving touchdowns (22). His impressive debut has not been matched since as he still ranks third all-time in NCAA history for single-season receiving yards and first among power-five receivers.
That success paved the way for Crabtree becoming the first freshman in history to win the coveted Biletnikoff Award, presented annually to the top receiver, regardless of position. He claimed the award again following his 2008 sophomore season, making him the first two-time Biletnikoff winner.
Crabtree followed with 1,165 yards and 19 touchdowns through the air as a sophomore en route to closing his Texas Tech tenure as the school’s all-time career leader in receiving yards (3,127) and touchdown catches (41). His mark for career receiving yards mark has since been snapped by current Miami Dolphins receiver Jakeem Grant, who totaled 3,289 yards over four seasons from 2011-15.
Crabtree was tabbed a Unanimous All-American following each of his two seasons, becoming the only Red Raider in history to earn the distinction twice in a career. He joins his now future Ring of Honor peers in Holub, Anderson and Thomas as the only Red Raiders in program history to earn first team All-America honors following two different seasons.
The San Francisco 49ers utilized the No. 10 pick of the 2009 NFL Draft to select Crabtree, whose early success allowed him to forego his final two collegiate seasons to join the professional ranks. He played six seasons with the 49ers, helping lead the organization to an appearance in Super Bowl XLVII during that time.
Crabtree enjoyed successful stints with the Oakland Raiders, Baltimore Ravens and the Arizona Cardinals following his time with the 49ers as he has caught 637 passes for 7,499 yards and 54 touchdowns over his professional career. Crabtree caught 40 or more passes in nine of his 11 NFL seasons and twice eclipsed 1,000 receiving yards in a regular season.
Even with his professional success, Crabtree has remained loyal to his Red Raider roots, returning to Lubbock several times since his final game at the 2009 Cotton Bowl. He provided Texas Tech Athletics with a $100,000 matching gift in July 2019 to endow the Michael Crabtree Endowed Scholarship, which is presented annually to a Red Raider wide receiver.
Additional details regarding Crabtree’s formal induction ceremony will be announced leading into the 2021 season as current health and safety precautions prohibit large indoor gatherings such as an induction banquet. Crabtree’s name will be placed on the West Stadium Building of Jones AT&T Stadium at a select 2021 game.
ABOUT THE TEXAS TECH FOOTBALL RING OF HONOR
The Texas Tech Football Ring of Honor was established in 2012 with the purpose of selecting an elite group of former players and coaches that made outstanding contributions to Red Raider Football. Candidates for the Ring of Honor are chosen and screened by an anonymous selection committee. Once the committee has determined a suitable candidate(s) for induction, the group makes a formal recommendation to the Director of Athletics. The Ring of Honor is proudly displayed on the West Stadium Building at Jones AT&T Stadium so that the accomplishments of the inductees are celebrated each year.
(Press release from Texas Tech Athletics)