Born to play the game, Jake Durden can't remember a time when he didn't want to play football.
“Growing up around the game, it's always what I wanted. Just the culture in my household has steered me towards football the most,” said Jake.
Jake has been steering the Blue Streaks in to the end-zone this season. He has averaged more than 35 points per game.
“He's the leader of our team really, the captain, the leader of our offense. Really, as he goes, we go as what we do offensively, he makes all the calls, all the checks at the line. Without him, we'd struggle,” said Harrisonburg High School Football Coach Chris Thurman.
Jake's success is not only on the field. His teachers say he is a leader in the classroom, too.
“He's the quarterback of the sports department in the classroom. He's more mature as a writer and an editor, and I've watched him take young writers who struggled last year, and really gets some product out of them this year,” said Harrisonburg High School Journalism Teacher Valerie Kibler.
Jake has a 4.4 GPA and is ranked 7th in his class. Even while take Advanced Placement, Honors and Governor's School classes, he has nothing below an A on his transcript.
“It's a lot of fun, especially where I am now in Governor's School, being able to do project based learning and presentations, when you can come off and know you spread your knowledge with other people and impressed some people,” said Jake.
He plans on applying to some of the nation's best universities for college.
“I'm looking at applying at some Ivy League schools, as well as UVA in state and maybe a school like Wake Forest. Stanford has always been my dream school. I want to go somewhere that I can hopefully compete at the highest level athletically for football, but also receive a great educational instruction.”
Ironic. A quarterback, hoping to receive, when he walks away from the halls of Harrisonburg High School.
His accomplishments on the field and his leadership in the classroom is why Jake Durden is WHSV's Student Athlete of the Week for Oct. 20.
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