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The Wall Of Excellence, Class Of 2012: John Clay

Inductee No. 2 was a bit of a surprise to me, but only so much. It's hard to argue with a three-time all-conference selection, especially when he played on some really, really poor Mizzou teams.

John Clay (1983-86)

Like Justin Smith a bit over a decade later, John Clay was the single truly great player on some otherwise iffy teams. Clay was Mizzou's lone first-round draft pick in a span from 1982-00. Bio: An earth-moving offensive tackle, John Clay was a St. louis, Mo., native who earned consensus All-American honors as a senior in 1986. He lettered four years for Mizzou, from 1983-86, and was a first-team all-Big Eight selection in 1984-85-86, joining former standouts Johnny roland, Gary Lane and Phil Bradley as MU’s only three-time all-league honorees in the Big Eight era. a team co-captain in 1986, Clay ended his collegiate career by playing in the prestigious Blue-Gray Game and East-West Shrine Game. He went on to become a first-round draft pick by the Los Angeles Raiders of the National Football League in 1987. He was later traded to the San Diego Chargers in 1988, but a back injury prematurely ended his promising career.