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Many top nationally ranked college football programs recruited Sapp, who chose the University of Miami.
Converted to defensive lineman while there, he won the Bronko Nagurski Trophy (for best defensive player), the Rotary Lombardi Award (for best lineman or linebacker) and the Bill Willis Award (for best defensive lineman), all in 1994.
On November 24, 2002, at Raymond James Stadium, Sapp was strongly criticized for a blindsided hit on the Green Bay Packers' Chad Clifton.
The hit 9 occurred during a Buccaneer interception return, when Sapp hit Clifton as the latter was jogging downfield, away from the main action.
The hit inflicted a severe pelvic injury and hospitalizing Clifton for almost a week, after which he could not walk unaided for the next five weeks.
In 2005, the NFL Competition Committee agreed on new guidelines for "unnecessary roughness", making hits such as Sapp's on Clifton illegal.
His Pro Bowl selection in 1997 was the first of seven straight, and he was honored as NFL Defensive Player of the year in 1999.
Warren Carlos Sapp (born December 19, 1972) is a former American football defensive tackle.
A Hall of Famer, Sapp played college football for the University of Miami, where he was recognized as a consensus All-American and won multiple awards.
After his illustrious college football career at the University of Miami as a defensive standout, Sapp was drafted into the NFL by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in the first round of the 1995 draft (as the 12th pick overall).
Analysts at the time thought he would be drafted much higher, but partially due to reports of multiple failed cocaine and marijuana tests released the night before the draft many teams passed on him.