Paramus grad Bryce Jacob epitomizes strong leadership on and off football field at Assumption College
Paramus High School graduate Bryce Jacob said his parents were his role models growing up. He looked up to them for what they had done in their lives and always tried to follow that when he was younger and in college. “They instilled a great work ethic, saying nothing is ever give to you and everything has to be earned, said Jacob. Carrying that around in the household has really helped me, my brother(Kyle) and sister(Alyssa)
”To see how Kyle worked so hard and after this past football and wrestling season he wants to work even harder and not satisfied and continue to build upon that success. Seeing him run out on to that mat at Boardwalk Hall and my dad and grandpa sitting there you could tell how excited they were and made the family and town so proud”
Jacob played a number of sports when he was younger, including football, baseball, wrestling, lacrosse and ice hockey. When he reached high school Jacob was a member of the track & field team his freshman year, but where he enjoyed the most success was on the gridiron. In 2014, he rushed the ball 65 times for 448 yards while scoring 10 touchdowns and on defense accounted for 98 tackles earning Jacob All-League, All-County First Team and Third Team All-State.
“Track and field helped me get faster and stay conditioned for football, Jacob said. Freshman year was a learning experience, coming together and learning the high school playbook. My sophomore and junior years I played linebacker and senior year linebacker/fullback. Once football season ended I would take two days off and then go right back into the weight room, running and setting goals for the next season”
“In the off-season is where you do the running, conditioning and starts with people coming together, buying in and being vocal leaders in the weight room so you can get those results on Friday night. Without good chemistry and relationships you can’t have a good team and hanging out after practice was so important. Head Coach Dan Sabella was so good at schemes, bringing the most out of players and work ethic he installed in the team with practices and weight room lifting”
After naming his favorite movie, Friday Night Lights, Jacob said it reminded him of playing with his teammates and winning a state championship. “The movie teaches you more than the game but the relationships you build in high school. Paramus is such a big sports town, athletic director Don Roll does a great job with all of the athletics and everyone in town knows each other and big family. The students’, teachers’ and principal(Raymond J. Kiem) bought in as much as the team did and supported us and wishing us good luck on game day. A big step going from a high school field to Met Life Stadium and an awesome experience that I embraced every moment of it and instead of being nervous I was ready to go and run out of that tunnel”
“My message to younger athletes is to set goals, work towards the, and never give up on something in life. It’s not going to be easy and won’t go the way you want to but stay the course and battle through adversity. Continuing to work towards those goals that were set is the pathway to success”
“I’m very happy to see how Kyle and rest of the team did last fall, Paramus fell off a little but the tragedy with the school bus accident and seeing how the team helped the town come together and on the field it was more than themselves and playing for the town”
Building on that experience in high school, Jacob decided to attend Assumption College in Worcester, Massachusetts where he fit in immediately. “I wasn’t sure what to expect freshman year but as soon as a I got here the coaches, players and professors made it felt like home. We share a close bond with each other, something you can’t break and buy. Friends’ right off the bat, nothing like playing football on Saturday’s and on the field 11 people having your back and nothing more satisfying than winning big games with your best friends’ that you will cherish forever”
In his freshman year with the Greyhounds, Jacob played in all 13 games. That number dropped to four games the following season but Jacob said there was more to than playing the game of football. “The greatest experience so far of being around a bunch of different guys and coaches. Learning more about the game that I’m so passionate about and being a student-athlete in college and not easy but something you can take into the real world.”
Making leaps and bounds in his junior year, where he started all 13 games, Jacob led the team in tackles with 93 while recording two and a half sacks, two fumble recoveries and one interception. Despite a complete overhaul of the coaching staff in his senior year and only appearing in 10 games, Jacob finished his career on a high note tallying 82 tackles.
“I really picked it up my junior an senior years starting every game and didn’t really leave the field, said Jacob. I played linebacker/long snapper and on special teams’. It was all about making plays and helping my team be successful. Stats are always nice to have but I was never about the accolades, just a team player and trying to contribute in anyway”
“Freshman year we won the Northeast 10 Conference Title that was the first in school history, sophomore year lost in the conference tournament final and junior won the conference final but lost to Indiana University of Pennsylvania in the NCAA Quarterfinals and close to winning a national championship”
“The previous head coach Bob Chesney not only taught me not only on the field but off the field about going to class, attending meetings and life lessons. There is a meaning and purpose behind that and so much to take away. I’m a business major with sports management as a minor but want to be a police officer”
Looking up to his favorite NFL player J.J. Watt, Jacobs said it’s just not about Watt being a great football player but the great things he does off the field. That is where Jacob has achieved the most by volunteering his time at the Del-Ridge Nursing Home, Habitat ReStore and The Willows at Worcester Retirement Community.
“It’s unbelievable and great thing to do, giving back to the community and especially for those in need, said Jacob. Being a college football player in Worcester people look up to you as role models around campus and in town. People appreciate you giving back to the community and nothing better than community service and helping people. Seeing them smile, shaking their hand at the end and them thanking you there is no better feeling”
Sunil Sunder Raj
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