Jacob Ingle isn't sure what path his life will take, but if he decides that military life is for him, the path will lead directly to the United States Military Academy at West Point.
"I'm not sure at this point,'' said Ingle, a 6-foot-3, 285-pound lineman. I like being a leader and encouraging guys, and I figure the military is the best place if I wanted to continue doing that. I have a couple of vets in my family. I think it would be a great fit for me.
"I would graduate as an officer and maybe stay a little longer than the years required and go up in rank, and see how far I could go. The benefits of West Point are really just amazing,'' he added. "I would love to play somewhere like that.''
Ingle, 17, has received one offer thus far: Elon, which is about a mile from where he lives in North Carolina. On Saturday he took an unofficial visit to Wake Forest, and has heard from several schools in the ACC.
A major factor in his decision will be his academic concentration. Ingle is an accomplished musician. During his junior year he played bass guitar for the All-County Chorus and auditioned and qualified for the Eastern Regional Orchestra for double bass.
He also plays the banjo and piano.
Another option is exercise science, a degree with which he could be perhaps a conditioning coach, or move on to medical school and become an orthopedic doctor.
And he could always teach music on the side.
For now, of course, he continues to work out for his senior year of high school football, while researching his options.
I love the Army offense and my favorite thing to do is run-block. There was a third and long and the coach called a run play and they got the first down. I thought that was awesome.
- Offensive line prospect, Jacob Ingle
"I'm working out five days a week,'' he said.
Primarily an offensive lineman, he expects to see more time on the other side of the ball as well this season. But he definitely prefers offense. "I like focusing on one thing, on one guy'' he offered. "I'm able to pull and make a nice blindside on somebody. I just love driving people back.
"I'm comfortable with straight-up blocking, getting good lift under (the opponent's) pads. Not really driving them just for better leverage and lift them off the ground, but to have them lose their balance.''
Ingle, who would like to weigh closer to 300 pounds, has been in touch with the Army staff and has done a lot of research on the USMA.
"I was at the Air Force game and took a tour of the weight room. Amazing,'' he said. "I love the Army offense and my favorite thing to do is run-block. There was a third and long and the coach called a run play and they got the first down. I thought that was awesome.''
He is looking forward to taking some official visits this fall, but is in no rush to make a decision. "I'm still pretty open-minded,'' he said. "Right now I'd like to make my decision as late as possible so I can get as much research as I can. I would love to actually take an official visit to Army. I would love to go back.''
That would certainly be music to Army's ears.
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