2000 FOOTBALL INDUCTEE
Michael Stewart, drafted in both baseball and football out of college, chose to pursue the NFL and played ten years for the St. Louis Rams and Miami Dolphins. Out of several NFL-caliber athletes to come out of Bakersfield High School, Stewart was one of the most hard-hitting defensive players ever produced in the Central San Joaquin Valley. He was 5’11” and 195 pounds. Stewart was drafted in the 8th round in 1987 by St. Louis, a franchise looking for a defensive back. He competed for the Rams for seven years, finishing his NFL career as a strong safety for the Dolphins in 1996. He played in 144 games, starting in seventy-nine contests with eleven interceptions, five sacks, one safety, and one touchdown. His on-field leadership was developed as captain of his high school team in his senior year. Born in Atascadero, Stewart played for Bakersfield High for two years. He was named to Coach Pat Preston’s All-Time Driller Team and to the Bob Elias Hall of Fame. Stewart also played baseball in high school, junior college, and at Fresno State University. He was selected in 1987 by major league baseball’s Toronto Blue Jays as an outfielder, the same year St. Louis drafted him for football.