The South Dakota Sports Hall of Fame is dedicated to the preservation, documentation and display of South Dakota's sports history.

Ben Leber - Inducted 2016

The 1997 Vermillion High grad played 10 seasons as a linebacker in the NFL, mostly as a starter.

The 6-foot-3, 244-pounder was a third-round draft pick of the San Diego Chargers in 2002 and was an immediate standout as he was named to the Pro Football Weekly and Football Digest All-Rookie teams, finishing the year with 50 tackles, five sacks and three forced fumbles. He had 80 and 60 tackles the next two seasons before injuries limited him to 22 tackles in 2005.

As an unrestricted free agent, he signed with the Minnesota Vikings in 2006. That season, he had 46 tackles, three sacks, three forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries, including one in the end zone against the Detroit Lions for the only touchdown of his career. The next season was even better with 67 tackles and five sacks. In 2008 he had 64 tackles, and he had 46 in 2009 and ’10.

He played for the St. Louis Rams in 2011 before retiring.

In his career, Leber had 496 tackles, 24 sacks, 13 forced fumbles, 12 fumble recoveries and five interceptions.

At Vermillion, he rushed for 1,404 yards as a junior and 1,350 as a senior. He was a Parade Magazine All-American as a senior. At Kansas State, he was a two-time All-Big 12 linebacker and finished his career with 216 tackles – fifth most in school history. As a senior, he was an AP third-team All-American.

Leber is now a TV/radio football commentator.

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