Football: Hinsdale Central’s Jacob White looks forward to 2-way challengeHinsdale Central's Jacob White usually plays linebacker but stepped in as a quarterback against Glenbard West in a 7 on 7 tournament Thursday, June 28, 2012 at Addison Trail High School in Addison. | Rob Hart~Sun-Times Media
Jacob White hasn’t thrown a pass regularly since his freshman year, but the Hinsdale Central junior received a taste of his old position June 28.
With three quarterbacks out of action, Red Devils coach Rich Tarka turned to White to run the offense in the second West Suburban 7-on-7 at Addison Trail. At 6-foot-1, 205 pounds, White now looks more like a linebacker playing quarterback. He was the backup quarterback last season to Chase Hamilton before getting called up after five weeks from the sophomore team to the varsity.
White played sparingly at linebacker on the varsity, but contributed more on special teams last season. Near the end of the season, he started playing fullback. This fall, White hopes to play both ways as starting linebacker and fullback.
“It’s been tough (playing both),” said White. “It’s a grind, but I love how it is hard. Playing both ways is not done much these days.”
Senior Andrew Pyle is the Red Devils’ top returning linebacker, but White and Jack McGann are in the running to form a pretty good linebacking corps for Hinsdale Central. The Red Devils were shorthanded at quarterback at Addison Trail after competing in the Grange Classic 7-on-7 the previous day at Wheaton Warrenville South. That 7-on-7 featured scoring and bracketed play.
Starting quarterback Brian Owens competed at Wheaton South, but coach Rich Tarka decided to give Owens a break after Owens also competed in a Harvard University 7-on-7 camp the previous weekend.
“I like (quarterback),” White said. “I think it is something I feel like I can do.”
Owens stood near White during the 7-on-7 at Addison Trail to help with play-calling. Hinsdale Central was without usual backup Hamilton to share snaps with Owens. Hamilton was missing due to a tennis camp and another reserve quarterback, sophomore Matt Rafferty, has yet to recover from an ankle injury. At Addison Trail, White split time at QB with senior Ricky Beuke, who played tight end last season on the varsity.
Tarka has given his team this week off, but the Red Devils return to 7-on-7 play from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday at Downers Grove South. Hinsdale Central’s final 7-on-7 of the summer is at Prospect July 19 before the team leaves for its camp at Illinois Wesleyan in Bloomington, which starts July 21.
White remains totally focused on football this summer although he has appeared in a few shootouts for the basketball team. He also plays baseball. The basketball team held its final shootouts last weekend at Willowbrook and Glenbard East since the AAU season begins this month.
“Football is really my focus since now because it’s around the corner,” White said.
“I like 7-on-7s to a certain extent, but at the end of the day, it’s not really football,” White said. “Plus, it’s just passing.”