FEATURED ATHLETE OF THE WEEK: Jacob Meyer, Greencastle
Jacob Meyer is a senior at Greencastle and participates in football and track and field. He previously competed in wrestling and baseball.
Banner Graphic: Being from a family of athletes and coaches, you were probably destined to be involved in sports from birth. How early did you start playing?
Jacob Meyer: “I started playing soccer when I was really little. I fell in love with that, because my parents wouldn’t let me play football until middle school. I was fine with that. I didn’t get burned out, and that was great. Sports have been everything to me. I have grown up around them, and they have shaped me into the man I am today. I just love it. I have learned how to take a hit and get back up. If someone doesn’t like you, you work through it.”
BG: You played football for your dad [Mike]. Has that been a good experience.
JM: “It was something I had looked forward to my whole life. I like it; I don’t get told ‘good job’ a lot, but he tells me what I need to improve on. I have built a really good relationship with my dad through football.”
BG: Describe the highlights of your football career.
JM: “In my freshman year I played junior varsity, and we did really well. Our record was 9-1, I think. My sophomore year, I didn’t do too well. I was really small, weighing 150 or 160, playing defensive end. I got pushed around a lot. Last year with coach [Nate] Bryan coming in, he helped me a lot. I credit him with helping me tremendously. I got better last year, I bulked up a little bit, and my stats were a lot better. This year, I listened to coach Bryan and worked hard in the weight room, and it was the best year yet. We put up some really big numbers, and they were amazing. Getting two safeties [against Cloverdale] was pretty great too. I still think about that all the time. The game was close, and they helped to break the game open. We made it to the sectional championship, and that was great. Beating Sullivan [in sectional semifinals] stands out the most to me. They had put 60 points up on us every time we had ever played them, and we shut them out 14-0. I think that was the first time they had been shut out in a long time.”
BG: Talk about your other sports.
JM: “I had wrestled, but I wanted to concentrate on football for this year. I regret not wrestling, but I needed to gain weight like the coaches wanted me to and not lose weight like I needed to do for wrestling. I used to play baseball, too. Track has gone OK this spring, but a lot of us have been slowed down by shin splints and our times haven’t been as good as we wanted. We are hoping to cut down our times over the rest of the season.”
BG: What other school activities do you participate in ?
JM: “I’m in Latin Club, Purple Pals [that works with Champions Together and special needs kids]. Especially Malachi. I love being around that kid. He makes me smile every time.”
BG: What do you like to do outside of school?
JM: “I like to hang out with my friends, and play video games. I like to play Madden football and games like that. I also like to go for runs a lot. In music, it has to be Imagine Dragons and Post Malone. I like the Avengers movies, and I love watching the ‘Walking Dead’ on TV. It’s so fun to think about what would happen if there would ever be a zombie apocalypse.”
BG: What are your plans for after school?
JM: “I’m looking for a smaller school where I can play football and study marketing or sales. Growing up, I have a lot of aunts and uncles who have done that.”
BG: What is something you have never done before that you would like to do someday?
JM: “Cheese rolling in England. They get this big wheel of cheese and go to this hill. They roll the cheese down the hill and run down after it. They just run after it. It’s really funny. I just love it. We looked it up in Mr. [Bradley] Kingma’s class my freshman year. We learned a lot of things in there.”
BG: What is your greatest fear?
BG: What are your favorite and least favorite foods?
JM: “My favorite is pineapple, but not on pizza. My least favorite is green beans.”
BG: If you were to describe your personality in one word, what would that word be?
JM: “Fun. You can’t live your life without laughing. I try to make other people laugh as often as I can.”
BG: What has your overall Greencastle experience been like?
JM: “I have liked it here. I will miss it a lot sports-wise. The coaches have been great. I will miss a lot of the teachers. They have been really nice. I will miss Mr. Bryan and Miss [Tabatha] Briones.”
BG: After college, do you have plans to live somewhere far away or do you want to be around here?
JM: “I don’t want to live in Greencastle. I want to spread my wings, maybe go South or North — wherever my career takes me.”
BG: Do you have any memorable experiences?
JM: “I had poison ivy all over my face when I was about 9. That took a month or two to go away. It was a painful experience. I got a shot to get rid of it.”