Inside new Calif HS FB Hall of Fame list

Perhaps the greatest player ever from the CIF San Diego Section — Junior Seau of Oceanside — and the winningest head coach in state history — Bob Ladouceur of Concord De La Salle — were among the easy choices for those who are going to be placed into the inaugural class of the California High School Football Hall of Fame. Photos: dignitymemorial.com & Harold Abend.


On Monday, the CIF and the Rose Bowl announced the names of the 100 players and 13 coaches who will be part of the first inaugural class of the new California High School Football Hall of Fame. At Cal-Hi Sports, we were a key part of the voting process and were worried about a lack of NorCal representation. Thankfully, that didn’t happen. Here’s an inside look at the voting, who voted and which players & coaches should be first on the list to be added to the first 100.

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It was a huge sigh of relief when going over the first 100 names of players and 13 coaches who are going to be listed as part of the first class in the new California High School Football Hall of Fame, which is going to be located at a space inside the iconic Rose Bowl and is part of the Rose Bowl’s 100th anniversary this year.

We had provided the Rose Bowl and members of the committee with information on all of the players on a ballot of more than 150 and approximately 40 coaches and put in a vote ourselves. But when a list of the first top 25 vote getters was seen, there were only three from Northern California compared to 22 from Southern California. If that ratio was extended out to 100, that would have only been 12 compared to 88 and would not have been close to a good representation of the entire state in this hall of fame.

The first step when the list of all 100 players and 13 coaches was released on Monday was to go through and count that representation. It wasn’t close to 12 and 88. It was 34 to 66, which is what we would have thought was close to what we would have come up with if doing a list of 100 players just based on our own information of state records, all-state teams, alumni lists and all-time state football scores.

Desean Jackson is one of six from Long Beach Poly on the list of players. No other school has more than four. Photo: Twitter.com.


There were 26 voters on the committee that selected these players and coaches. Only six were from Northern California, including Cal-Hi Sports. There was one specifically from San Diego. The rest were essentially all from the CIF Southern Section or L.A. City Section. There also was no one specifically from the the CIF Central Section. We also know of one media member on the committee who was not allowed to vote.

Despite those totals, the representation from NorCal ended up fine. Part of the reason for that is that the voters also basically just put in everyone from California who is already in the Pro Football Hall of Fame or who has won a Heisman Trophy. What they did in high school competition wasn’t very important.

A lot of those players happen to be from Northern California. This includes two future no brainer Pro Football Hall of Famers — Tom Brady of San Mateo Serra and Aaron Rodgers of Chico Pleasant Valley. We made a big pitch for Brady that he was good enough in high school to be considered (offers from Michigan, Cal, etc.) but weren’t as sure about Rodgers (no offers until one year in JC). If you’re putting in all of the other Hall of Famers, though, Brady and Rodgers become easy choices.

Now, of course, there’s going to be some folks upset about certain players who are missing. For us, especially since he just passed away last spring, the top omission would be 1958 State Player of the Year Daryle Lamonica of Clovis. It’s not like the Mad Bomber wasn’t good in college (Notre Dame) or in the NFL, either. Others we’d look to push for down the road would include receiver Mel Gray (Santa Rosa Montgomery), lineman Aaron Taylor of Concord De La Salle, coach/player Mort Kaer of Red Bluff, coach/player Steve Grady from Loyola of Los Angeles and coach/player Mike Holmgren (San Francisco Lincoln).

The only player listed that we didn’t vote for and were surprised to see was Ernie Nevers of Santa Rosa. This is only because Nevers didn’t graduate from Santa Rosa High and it specifically stated in the criteria that every player needed to have been a California high school graduate. O.J. Simpson (San Francisco Galileo) was the one Heisman Trophy winner and/or Hall of Famer not included (for obvious reasons).

Also note for the coaches that they need to be retired, so Bruce Rollinson (Mater Dei) isn’t eligible yet. There’s also a 10-year wait period after high school graduation so no Jake Browning (Folsom) yet, either.

There will be a ribbon cutting ceremony for this new Hall of Fame in November at the Rose Bowl in conjunction with the CIF Southern Section Division I championship being played there. All of the others on the committee who voted should be commended for their time and efforts in the project.

Here is the complete list of all of the players and coaches:

PLAYERS (100)

Frankie Albert (Glendale)
Marcus Allen (Lincoln, San Diego)
Jon Arnett (Manual Arts)
Matt Barkley (Mater Dei, Santa Ana)
Steve Bartkowski (Buchser, Santa Clara)
Dick Bass (Vallejo)
Gary Beban (Sequoia, Redwood City)
Hal Bedsole (Reseda)
Ricky Bell (Fremont, L.A.)
Tom Brady (Serra, San Mateo)
John Brodie (Oakland Tech)
Tedy Bruschi (Roseville)
Reggie Bush (Helix, La Mesa)
Mark Carrier (Long Beach Poly)
Chris Claiborne (J.W. North, Riverside)
Randy Cross (Crespi, Encino)
Randall Cunningham (Santa Barbara)
Sam Cunningham (Santa Barbara)
Anthony Davis (San Fernando)
Glenn Davis (Bonita, La Verne)
Jack Del Rio (Hayward)
Morley Drury (Long Beach Poly)
Henry Ellard (Hoover, Fresno)
John Elway (Granada Hills)
Nello “Flash” Falaschi (Bellarmine, San Jose)
Tom Fears (Manual Arts, L.A.)
Vince Ferragamo (Banning, Wilmington)
Kai Forbath (Notre Dame, Sherman Oaks)
DeShaun Foster (Tustin)
Dan Fouts (St. Ignatius, S.F.)
Mike Garrett (Roosevelt, Los Angeles)
Toby Gerhart (Norco)
Frank Gifford (Bakersfield)
Tony Gonzalez (Huntington Beach)
Pat Haden (Bishop Amat, La Puente)
Michael Haynes (John Marshall, L.A.)
John Huarte (Mater Dei, Santa Ana)
DeSean Jackson (Long Beach Poly)
Jimmy Johnson (Kingsburg)
John Henry Johnson (Pittsburg)
Maurice Jones-Drew (De La Salle)
Napoleon Kaufman (Lompoc)
Lincoln Kennedy (Morse, San Diego)
Billy Kilmer (Citrus, Azusa)
Eddie LeBaron (Oakdale)
Matt Leinart (Mater Dei, Santa Ana)
Marcedes Lewis (Long Beach Poly)
James Lofton (Washington, Los Angeles)
Ronnie Lott (Eisenhower, Rialto)
John Lynch (Torrey Pines, San Diego)
Marshawn Lynch (Oakland Tech)
Gino Marchetti (Antioch)
Ollie Matson (Washington, San Francisco)
Bruce Matthews (Arcadia)
Bill McColl (Hoover, San Diego)
Tim McDonald (Edison, Fresno)
Hugh McElhenny (Washington, L.A.)
Willie McGinest (Long Beach Poly)
John McKay Jr. (Bishop Amat, La Puente)
Mike McKeever (Mount Carmel, Los Angeles)
Freeman McNeil (Banning, Wilmington)
Ron Mix (Hawthorne)
Warren Moon (Hamilton, Los Angeles)
Don Mosebar (Mt. Whitney, Visalia)
Harold “Brick” Muller (Oakland Tech)
Anthony Munoz (Chaffey, Ontario)
Ernie Nevers (Santa Rosa)
Ken O’Brien (Jesuit, Carmichael)
Carson Palmer (Santa Margarita)
Joe Perry (Jordan, Los Angeles)
Jim Plunkett (James Lick, San Jose)
Les Richter (Fresno)
Ron Rivera (Seaside)
Jackie Robinson (John Muir, Pasadena)
Jerry Robinson (Cardinal Newman)
Aaron Rodgers (Pleasant Valley, Chico)
Rashaan Salaam (La Jolla Country Day)
John Sciarra (Bishop Amat, La Puente)
Junior Seau (Oceanside)
Richard Sherman (Dominguez, Compton)
Jeff Siemon (Bakersfield)
Alex Smith (Helix, La Mesa)
Dennis Smith (Santa Monica)
Bob St. Clair (Poly, San Francisco)
Lynn Swann (Serra, San Mateo)
Amani Toomer (De La Salle)
Gino Torretta (Pinole Valley)
Norm Van Brocklin (Acalanes, Lafayette)
Gene Washington (Long Beach Poly)
Kenny Washington (Lincoln, L.A.)
Bob Waterfield (Van Nuys)
Charles White (San Fernando)
Russell White (Crespi, Encino)
Ricky Williams (Patrick Henry, San Diego)
D.J. Williams (De La Salle)
Roy Williams (James Logan, Union City)
Ron Yary (Bellflower)
Charles Young (Edison, Fresno)
Luis Zendejas (Don Lugo, Chino)
Gary Zimmerman (Walnut)

COACHES (13)

Bob Ladouceur (De La Salle, Concord)
Marijon Ancich (St. Paul, Santa Fe Springs)
Kevin Rooney (Notre Dame, Sherman Oaks)
Gene Vollnogle (Banning, Carson)
Bob Johnson (Mission Viejo, El Toro)
Herb Meyer (El Camino, Oceanside)
John Barnes (Los Alamitos)
Dwight “Goldie” Griffith (Bakersfield)
Harry Welch (Canyon, St. Margaret’s, Santa Margarita)
Dick Bruich (Fontana)
Bill Redell (Crespi, St. Francis, Oaks Christian)
Lou Farrar (Charter Oak, Covina)
Mike Herrington (Hart, Bellflower)

Mark Tennis is the co-founder and publisher of CalHiSports.com. He can be reached at markjtennis@gmail.com. Don’t forget to follow Mark on the Cal-Hi Sports Twitter handle: @CalHiSports


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7 Comments

  1. Tom Nunes
    Posted August 15, 2022 at 6:35 pm | Permalink

    Great to see my childhood idol and fellow Cardinal Newman alum Jerry Robinson in the list. I was surprised Ed Lloyd didn’t make the coaches list.

  2. Jimmy Glasco
    Posted August 15, 2022 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    David Deacon Turner from Shafter High School should have been on there. Also Ryan Matthews.

  3. Wilbur Jordan
    Posted August 16, 2022 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    We have discussed this HOF a few months ago as I was confused by calling it a HS HOF! By your own admission you stated that what you did in high school had little to in making this HOF. This shows that you needed to win the Heisman Trophy, be a pro, or be a major college star. Where is the player who was just a great player in HS ? Maybe I will feel different when I see players like Brian Brown, Kevin Willhite, Tyler Ebell, Jackie Jensen and many more in the HOF. Maybee guys like Bill Carlquist, Boomer Williams, Roger Grant, or Omri Hildreth who were great HS players will get a look?

  4. Ol Guillermo
    Posted August 17, 2022 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

    Ken Margerum, Fountain Valley is an oversight; 2 time All-American at Stanford, most TD catches in Pac 10 history and a TD reception in Super Bowl 20 for the Bears…

  5. ARHS Stats
    Posted August 17, 2022 at 10:30 pm | Permalink

    Why are there no players from St. Francis (Mountain View) and only 1 player from Bellarmine (San Jose). No players from Oak Grove (San Jose) and other top CCS football teams.

    Pat Tillman (Leland) was a co-Player of the Year on the All CCS Mercury News team in 1994, Eric Lewis (St. Francis MV) was the other co-Player of the Year.
    Tom Brady did not make the first team on the All CCS Mercury News team. Serra did not play a playoff game in either 1993 or 1994. Mitty was a Division 4 CCS Champion in 1994.

    Tom Brady is a NFL All Star. Which means there are players that should be inducted into High School Hall of Fame before him.

    Someone needs to find out what these players did in High School before nominating them.

    • Mark Tennis
      Posted August 18, 2022 at 9:47 am | Permalink

      Tim Rossovich of St Francis was on the ballot and Dan Pastorini of Bellarmine was on as well. All we can tell you is that 19 of the voters from SoCal and that every area of the state has missing players. Mike Janda also had to have been close for the coaches. We voted for Tillman and we voted for Brady. He was all-Bay Area by SF Examiner and Merv Harris told us back then that Brady was one of the best QBs he’d ever seen. We saw him as well at a combine. We didn’t put Brady down for not being on a very good team, but even then as of now the WCAL was super-tough. In today’s playoffs, Serra of 94 probably would have won a state title in a lower division like SHC did last season.

    • Bob Wilhelm
      Posted September 1, 2022 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

      Good list but I think Marlon McKeever and Kermit Alexander should be included.

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