Celebrating our past


ErIn George

SRJC’s Wall of Fame sits outside the football coaches office to celebrate former SRJC football players who have achieved success at the highest level. This is a photo of the wall.

Tom Rivas, Assistant Sports Editor

Over the past few decades, several Santa Rosa Junior College football players have gone on to the NFL.

In 2015, SRJC’s football program raised money to create a “Wall of Fame.” The players who reached the NFL are painted on this wall, located outside the coaching staff’s office in Tauzer Gym.

The coaching staff came up with this idea after visiting Stanford University, which has a similar Wall of Fame highlighting players who reached the NFL.

“We’re always looking for a way to market our program and acknowledge the accomplishment of our players,” said head coach Lenny Wagner. “We are all very happy how it turned out.”

The most recent SRJC player to reach the NFL is Jason Verrett, a first round draft pick for the San Diego Chargers in 2014.

Verrett graduated from Rodriguez High School in Fairfield, California and, like most SRJC football players, had no scholarship offers after high school.

“He came to SRJC and wasn’t sure if he was going to play offense or defense,” Wagner said. “He grey shirted his first season, played the next and signed with [Texas Christian University] where he made First-Team All-Big 12 and was named All-American by Sports Illustrated.”

Another player on the wall is Cooper Helfet. Helfet came from Redwood High School in Marin and had a full lacrosse scholarship to John Hopkins University out of high school. He planned on becoming a doctor, like his father, but decided to change professions.

After playing one semester of lacrosse at John Hopkins, Helfet decided he’d rather play football and transferred to SRJC.

Helfet played two years for the Bear Cubs then transferred to Duke University where he started both years. It’s rare for a football player to transfer from a junior college to Duke.

He signed a deal with the Seattle Seahawks after college and became roommates and close friends with Marshawn Lynch. Helfet recently left the Seahawks and is back in the Bay Area, playing for the Oakland Raiders.

Koa Misi graduated from Montgomery High School in Santa Rosa. He was recruited out of high school but decided not to accept any scholarships. Instead stayed close to home to play for the Bear Cubs.

Misi played one year at SRJC, then transferred to the University of Utah where he played for three years. He made Second All Conference in 2008 and First Team All-Conference in 2009.

After college the Miami Dolphins drafted Misi 40th overall in the second round of the 2010 NFL Draft.

Another player on the wall is Martin Tevaseu who graduated from Anderson Valley High School in Booneville, California. After a standout high school career, he had no offers and decided to play for the SRJC Bear Cubs.

Tevaseu played one season with the Bear Cubs then transferred to Arizona State where he red shirted for one season then decided to come back to SRJC.

Tevaseu finished playing at SRJC, he was offered a scholarship to University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where he finished playing his college career.

The following year Tevaseu became a free agent and played for the Cleveland Browns, New York Jets and the Indianapolis Colts.

When Tevaseu’s NFL career ended, he decided to come back to SRJC to coach the Bear Cubs defensive line. He has helped the team achieve greatness and is well respected by players and staff.

Adam Froman is also on the wall. As the starting quarterback at Maria Carrillo High School in Santa Rosa he threw for 1,944 yards his senior year and had 20 touchdown passes.

Froman had no scholarship offers after high school, so he decided to play for the Bear Cubs.

In his first season, Froman was a backup quarterback, and during his second season, he started and was selected as California’s Player of the Year.

Froman transferred to the University of Louisville and played for the Cardinals. At Louisville, in 2009-10, he threw 17 touchdowns on 2,987 yards during the 2009-10 season.

After Louisville, Froman signed with the Atlanta Falcons and later played in the Canadian Football League with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers.

The last player on the wall is Scott Ware who graduated from Montgomery High School in Santa Rosa and played for the Bear Cubs the following year.

Ware had an exceptional year his freshmen season and was offered a scholarship to play for Pete Carroll at USC. He turned it down and played another year for the Bear Cubs becoming the Player of the Year for California, and led the Bear Cubs to an 11-0 season.

After SRJC, Ware signed with USC where he started both years, played in two national championships and won one.

Later Ware signed with the Philadelphia Eagles, then played for the Indianapolis Colts.

After the Bear Cubs’ highly successful 2016 season, many sophomore players have been recruited to other colleges. And with so much talent coming out of SRJC, the Wall of Fame is destined to grow for years to come.