Herzog followed an unconventional path into the Captains defense
Football is more than just a fantasy this season for junior #15 Jake Herzog, who was recruited to Captains football just last semester. Herzog was asked to join the team after student coaches and players witnessed his skills on the flag football field with his team “No Punt Intended.”
They won the intramural championship in the fall and then came in at a close second in the spring. Herzog declined the offer to practice with the team in the fall, but as spring rolled around, “they had a bunch of injuries so they basically asked me to come out and just help with spring practices to give them numbers,” he commented.
He also traveled with the team in the late spring to Canada for a scrimmage. “By the end of it, it was mutual that we decided I wanted to keep playing,” and that’s exactly what he did.
This isn’t Herzog’s first run on the football field. He’s been playing the game since he was seven years old, through high school, but took a break his freshman and sophomore year of college. Though playing defense is a bit of a change for Herzog from playing offense in his high school, he seems to be adjusting well as a first-string cornerback. In his first three games alone, Herzog has completed 12 total solo tackles and a single interception gaining 28 yards.
When he began practicing with the team, Herzog said he was not expecting to play defense, let alone first-string, “but I’m getting a lot more chances at playing time than I was expecting,” he commented.
When asked about the transition onto the team, he stated, “It was different.”
“Going into practices, it was different being the kid that got recruited from intramurals. But the team accepted me pretty quick and I’ve enjoyed it.”
Not only is he on the football team, but he is also a full-time student, in ROTC and leads for Young Life at Penninsula middle schools. The transition has been “busy, it’s a big-time commtitment,” he said. Though the amount of time he gets to play the sport he loves makes it worth it.
His favorite part thus far is the games. “They’re definitely very different from high school games, but it’s still a really cool atmosphere and it’s just fun to be back on the field.”
Herzog is looking forward to the rest of his first season. From getting off to a rocky start of 0-3, he hopes the team will start winning some games.
His goal for the team is “to win our conference, which is still possible because we haven’t played any conference games.”
He is looking forward to helping the team any way he can to get a conference title. Not only does Herzog play football, but his favorite NFL team is the Redskins, who have also had a rocky start to their season.
We are hoping, like our beloved Captains football team, that they will make a comeback, and we are wishing Jake and the rest of the football team luck on the rest of their season.
We’re all rooting for you to win. The next CNU football home game is Saturday, October 12 at 1:00 p.m. at William Paterson University.
If you aren’t headed home for fall break, come out and support the Captains football team in three weeks.
~Kaitlin Sanata, Staff Writer~