Sharpe was a three-time All-Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference selection from 1987 to 1989 and the SIAC Player of the Year in 1987. He was selected as a Kodak Division II All-American in 1989, and was a three-time Pittsburgh Courier Black College All-American (1987-1989). He led the Tigers' football team to their best records in the program's history: 7-3 in 1988 and 8-1 in 1989. He was drafted in the seventh round of the 1990 NFL draft by the Denver Broncos. He remained with Denver until 1999, winning two Super Bowls. During his two-year stint with the Baltimore Ravens, he won another Super Bowl. Sharpe played in eight Pro Bowls (1992–1998, 2001) and amassed over 1,000 receiving yards in three different seasons. He finished his 14 year career with 815 receptions for 10,060 yards and 69 touchdowns in 203 games. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2011.