Arena Football League Hall of Famers Hernandez and Wagner to Have Jerseys Retired Saturday
Tuesday July 10, 2012
SAN JOSE, Calif. - The SaberCats announced today that the jerseys of Arena Football League Hall of Famers Sam Hernandez and Barry Wagner will be retired in a special halftime ceremony on Saturday at HP Pavilion during the evening’s game between the SaberCats and Iowa Barnstormers. Hernandez and Wagner are the first SaberCats players to have their jerseys retired in franchise history.
“Having my jersey retired is such an honor because this has always been my home and my team.” Hernandez said about this Saturday’s ceremony. “The Hall of Fame was obviously a great honor, but this is so special for me to be able to do this at HP Pavilion in front of our great fans.”
Hernandez (6-3, 255) became the fifth offensive/defensive lineman to be inducted into the AFL Hall of Fame on March 9 of this year and currently ranks as the league’s all-time leader in sacks with 59.0. A 13-year veteran of the AFL and the ninth greatest player of all time according to the league’s Silver Anniversary Committee, he served the final eight seasons of his career with the SaberCats (1998-2005) helping them to two ArenaBowl titles (2002, 2004). Hernandez is also the franchise leader in career sacks (38.5), while ranking second with 16 career forced fumbles. Prior to his time in San Jose, Hernandez served stints with the Charlotte Rage (1992), Las Vegas Sting (1994-95) and Anaheim Pirahnas (1996-97).
“With all of the players that have played for the SaberCats, it is an honor to be one of the first two jerseys to go up in those rafters,” Wagner said regarding his jersey retirement. “It is such an honor, and I truly want to thank the whole SaberCats organization and most importantly the fans.”
Wagner (6-3, 225) became just the fifth wide receiver/defensive back to be named to the Hall of Fame earlier this year after spending seven seasons (2000-06) with the SaberCats following the first eight years of his career with the Orlando Predators (1992-99). He earned three ArenaBowl titles, winning two with San Jose in 2002 and 2004 after winning his first championship with the Orlando Predators in 1998. Wagner was voted the second greatest player in league history by the AFL Historical Committee in 2006 and currently ranks second all-time in AFL career annals in receiving yards with 13,363. Wagner also earned Ironman of the Year honors from 1992-97 and Offensive Player of the Year in 1995 and 1997. He currently ranks as San Jose’s franchise career leader in rushing touchdowns (58) and forced fumbles (19) while ranking third in all-purpose yards (6,641) and total tackles (345.5).
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