Before he set one foot on the football field for the Mustangs, Jason Wolf proved that he was an amazing young man. The fact that he chose SMU over schools like Michigan and UCLA are known to many, but the story behind the beginning of his relationship with SMU is not as widely known.
Offensive coordinator Tom Rossley was making calls to coaches about potential recruits when he came across Wolf's high school coach. Wolf's coach suggested that Rossley talk to the player that everybody wanted. Coach Rossley called and Wolf seemed mildly interested. He called back a couple of days later, and the two spoke at length. Rossley explained that Wolf would have to pay his own freight to visit SMU. Wolf agreed and mentioned that a friend of the family could pick him up at the airport. However, for fear that this could be misconstrued as a representative of the school; Wolf had to take a cab instead.
Shockingly, Wolf agreed. He shelled out $250 for a red-eye flight to Dallas on a Saturday morning, paid another $50 in round-trip cab fares and meal money during a twelve-hour tour of the city, and then returned that night to Detroit. He had seen enough and knew that he was going to SMU.
It did not take Wolf long to show SMU fans that he was a valuable player to have. During his freshman season, he proved that he and quarterback Mike Romo could be a force to be reckoned with. By the end of the 1989 season, Wolf had set an NCAA freshman record by catching 61 passes. He did this while facing the 3rd toughest schedule in the nation which included four Top 20 teams. He led the team in scoring with 50 points, always seeming to be there when Mike Romo needed him most.
After four seasons, Wolf finished his collegiate career holding records for most catches in SWC history and most catches by a freshman in NCAA history. However, neither of these are what he considered to be his crowning achievement. Rather, Wolf was most proud of receiving his degree. He was able to receive a degree in finance while maintaining a 3.1 GPA. It is something like this that shows us how special a young man he was, more so than anything he did on the football field.
When asked to comment on his records, Wolf said, "I just want to be remembered as one of the guys who helped start up SMU's program again. Individual records are always broken. That's the thing about football. You play for four years, and two years later nobody knows who you are."
Jason Wolf once again takes his place among SMU greats as we honor his setting an NCAA record in 1989 with a spot in our countdown of the 90 Greatest Moments in SMU Football History.