Terry Hoage was a professional football player whose career began at University of Georgia, where he was a two-time All-American, Heisman Trophy candidate and 1984 SEC Athlete of the Year. His NFL career spanned 13 seasons with six teams, including the New Orleans Saints (where he met his wife), Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins, San Francisco 49ers, Houston Oilers, and Arizona Cardinals. Upon retirement, the Hoages purchased their Paso Robles estate and began making wine. Terry paid homage to his football days when naming his TH Vineyards wines, referencing “The Pick”, “The 46” and the famed “Hedges” of UGA.
Terry Hoage began his football career as a defensive back for the University of Georgia from 1980 to 1983. In 1983, he finished 5th for the Heisman Trophy and, in 1984, was the SEC Athlete of the Year. He graduated from UGA in 1985 with a BS in Genetics, a 3.85 GPA, and as a two-time All-American. Vince Dooley, head coach at the University of Georgia, called Hoage “the best defensive player I’ve ever coached and maybe the best one I’ve ever seen.”
Terry’s professional football career in the NFL spanned 13 seasons with six teams: the New Orleans Saints, Philadelphia Eagles, Washington Redskins, San Francisco 49ers, Houston Oilers, and Arizona Cardinals. Prior to retiring from the NFL in 1996, Terry won a Superbowl in 1992 with the Washington Redskins. Later, he was privileged to be inducted into the Georgia-Florida Hall of Fame in 1997, the College Football Hall of Fame in 2000, the CoSIDA Academic Hall of Fame in 2004, and the Georgia Sports Hall of Fame in 2004.
Terry and his wife, Jennifer, purchased a 26-acre vineyard on the west side of Paso Robles in 2002 and began their label, Terry Hoage Vineyards. Remarkably, Terry has literally touched almost every aspect of building the winery—he designed and helped assemble the press, and shaker tables, engineered and installed the irrigation, and planted the vineyard (with the exception of the original 5 acres of Syrah which was designed and planted by John Alban in 1998).
To be fair, Terry did not undertake this endeavor alone. Aside from having Jennifer to guide the way, he was fortunate to befriend Justin Smith of SAXUM Vineyards shortly after moving to Paso. It was the willingness of Justin to mentor, share and guide Terry and Jennifer through the winegrowing and winemaking process that ensured success early on. In 2008, they were pronounced Top New California Wine Producers by Wine Spectator and have continued to be recognized for crafting quality Rhone-style wines from their Willow Creek estate.
Terry is a founding member of Must! Charities, a philanthropic organization dedicated to improving quality of life in San Luis Obispo’s North County. The Hoages take an active role in supporting the community, also donating to local arts and education programs.