Steven Joachim, University of Memphis
"Through the years, I've been coached by several different coaching staff's in my career. I can wholeheartedly say that no coaching staff meant more to me than the coaches at Mendocino College ... My experience there was like no other, as it was my closest experience to having a family away from home ... They always steered me in the right direction, whether it would be on the field or off the field ... The coaching staff was always positive and I had a wonderful experience at Mendocino College."
Jacob Laudenslayer, Marshall University
"I had two goals in mind and that was to get a college education and play big time college football. Mendocino College enabled me to accomplish both of my goals. I did not have the offers coming out of high school and I looked at many junior colleges in California and realized Mendocino College would allow me to accomplish my dreams. I believe our teams and my individual success can be attributed to the coaching staff. One of the greatest things I enjoyed about my time at Mendocino College were my teammates. They came from all over the country and I am still in touch with many of them today. The day I sat in the coaches office with my mother to sign my letter of intent to Marshall University was one of the most fulfilling days in my life."
Jermaine Jacobs, Portland State University
"Playing football at Mendocino College under Defensive Coordinator and Assistant Head Coach Mike Mari was literally one of the best opportunities in my life. I learned so much from being in the Mendocino Football program about football but also about life. I am originally from Sacramento CA, and attended Valley High School. I was not heavily recruited out of high school due to grades and lack of exposure. When Coach Mari found me and offered to change my future. While attending College and playing under Coach Mari he really taught me how to be a man and take responsibility for my actions. When I first got to Mendocino I was immature but Coach Mari changed that. He would not except any excuses and always made me rise up and be a man. I didn’t realize until later that what he was teaching me would help me be a better man in the future. Coach Mari has never told me anything wrong, and when I made a bad choice he was the first one there to tell me and help me correct it.
Coach Mari is also by far the best football coach I have ever played under. He knows what he is talking about and is going to put you in the right position to be successful. While attending Mendocino College and with Coach Mari’s help I earned a spot on the All American Team, and was also League Defensive MVP. He made me the strongest player of the team for both my freshman and sophomore years. Mendocino put me in a great place to be successful. I know that a lot of my success came from the time my coach invested in me. Attending Mendocino College is the best choice I have ever made in my life and I wouldn’t change that for anything in the world. Mendocino College helped me earn a scholarship to play football at Portland State. Coach Mari taught me to go after what I believe in and go for it with everything in me." - Jermaine Jacobs
Jermaine Jacobs Full Student Success Story
Jared and Adrian Dunn, Bemidji State University
"I attended Mendocino College from 2004-2005 after graduating from Healdsburg High School located in Northern California. I choose to attend Mendocino College with aspirations of playing college football for a quality program. I was not recruited by any large schools out of High School so I took the Junior College route. This choice ended up being one the best choices I made right out of High School. Most kids have dreams of making it big and going to a Division I program although they are just another name on the roster. While attending Mendocino College I started off as a backup Tight End. Within 4 games of my freshman year I was a starting Defensive End leaving Mendocino College a two year All Bay Valley Conference and one year All State Defensive End. I received a Scholarship along with my older brother Jared, who played Linebacker and was a Team Captain and All Conference player at Mendocino, to play Division II football at Bemidji State University located in Northern Minnesota. We went on to win the Conference Championship and compete in the Mineral Water Bowl game. From there I attended Graduate School at Bemidji State and received a Masters Degree in Sports Science.
I am now a Full Time Defensive Line coach at Augsburg College located in Minneapolis Minnesota. During my time at Mendocino College I put in countless hours of training to better myself and the team. The coaching staff did a tremendous job helping mold me into who I am today. I learned the value of hard work, pride, commitment and discipline. We had a saying at Mendocino, “The One”. Everything we did whether it be practice, working out, any sort of game preparation or during the game was to act like it will be your last time doing it. Give everything you have at every given moment and the results will benefit yourself along with the program. I learned to never leave doubt in your mind of could you have given more effort or done something different to change the outcome. Mendocino College is a great place with great people that will set you on a path to be successful in life." - Adrian Dunn
JoDane Craigman, University of Kentucky
Going to Mendocino College was a life changing experience. I had many barriers to break down and bridges to cross to get to MC. Playing football was the easy part, because all the elements were there for me to exceed, from great coaching to an excellent training staff. Keeping myself focused in the class room was the key to my success. This is where the Mendocino coaching staff came in. I was constantly reminded that, school is first! Without the proper classes I would never see a D1 field and the coaches reminded me of that. I learned numerous lessons playing for Mendocino College, and gained many valuable friendships that I wouldn’t change for the world.
I was at Mendocino for two years, two of the best years of my life. I managed to lead the defense in sacks for two years in a row, and nearly capturing the state sack record with 19.5 sacks in my sophomore season. I was on the Nor-Cal All-combine team, and 2005 Bay-Valley conference champs. That 2005 team was legendary, many trials and tribulations but we pulled through. I went on the University of Kentucky, and was Music city bowl champions two years in a row.
-JoDane Craigman, University of Kentucky