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Vintage High School’s Josh Robert and American Canyon High’s Jacob Mitchell will represent Napa County as the outstanding senior back and lineman at the Northern California Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame Scholar Athlete awards banquet on March 8.

The event, which honors 24 scholar athletes from 12 counties, will be held at the San Francisco Airport Marriott, 1800 Old Bayshore Highway in Burlingame, at 7 p.m. Each of the honorees will receive a $1,000 scholarship to the recipient’s college of choice.

Robert, an outside linebacker-wide receiver, and Mitchell, a center, were selected by a committee of media members.

Senior football players from Napa County were nominated by their coaches and schools.

The announcement was made by Napa County chairman Jon Salinger. The award is based on outstanding academic performance, exemplary school leadership and citizenship, and superior football performance, according to the Northern California organization’s website,

Alameda, Contra Costa, Lake, Mendocino, Marin, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Santa Cruz, Solano and Sonoma counties are also part of the Northern California Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame.

The Northern California Chapter has awarded $888,000 in scholarships to Northern California scholar-athletes since 1960.

The National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame has 119 chapters around the country.

Vintage and American Canyon both reached the CIF North Coast Section playoffs last fall.

Vintage (10-3 overall, 6-0 Vine Valley Athletic League) won the league title and went 2-1 in the NCS Division 1 playoffs.

American Canyon (6-6 overall, 5-1 VVAL) finished in second place in the league and went 1-1 in the NCS Division 2 playoffs.

A look at Josh Robert and Jacob Mitchell:

Josh Robert

A two-way starter, Robert (5-foot-9, 165 pounds) was named first-team defense on the All-VVAL team at linebacker.

“Josh is an extremely athletic and fast football player who is dynamic and hits very hard,” Crushers’ head coach Dylan Leach said. “Josh rarely came off the field and had numerous highlight reel tackles on special teams.

“As an outside linebacker, we would utilize Josh to make sure we put him in the best chance to make a play.”

Robert’s all-around talent and versatility allowed Vintage to play him also at cornerback, safety and rush end in situations.

“He was a pleasure to coach with a great attitude,” said Leach. “The kid brought his lunch pail every day.”

Robert was credited with 92 total tackles, four sacks, eight tackles for loss, caused three fumbles, recovered two fumbles and intercepted two passes.

Ross has a 4.33 weighted GPA.

Jacob Mitchell

Mitchell (5-foot-10, 200 pounds) was named first-team offense on the All-VVAL team.

“Jacob is a leader on the football team,” Wolves’ head coach John Montante said. “His attitude commands the respect of his teammates and trust from his coaches.

“Jacob is an undersized lineman. However, he was a dominant force in the VVAL. He frequently was matched up against bigger linemen, always accepted the circumstances, and attacked with ferocity.

“He was the leader of our offensive line. He did his homework, made calls, and was an extension of the coaching staff on the field.”

Mitchell has a 3.52 weighted GPA.

Other County Nominees

Ignacio Blancas, lineman, Calistoga.

Diesel Chappellet, lineman, St. Helena.

Rhys Irwin, lineman, Vintage.

Zach Keefer, lineman, Justin-Siena.

Gavin Zimmerman, lineman, Napa.

Michael Fitzgerald, back, Justin-Siena.

Chase LaRue, back, Napa.

Eric Martinez, back, St. Helena.

Brandon Seay, back, American Canyon.

Gabe Sullivan, back, Calistoga.

Ticket Information

The cost per person for the Northern California Chapter of the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame Scholar Athlete awards banquet is $55. To purchase tickets, or for more information, call 650-692-9100.

For more information, contact Bob Keropian at (650) 342-4775, or go to

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Executive Sports Editor

Executive Sports Editor Marty James has been with the Napa Valley Register since 1979. He is a member of the Associated Press Sports Editors, California Prep Sportswriters Association, and the California Golf Writers Association. He was inducted into the