Fossil Ridge quarterback hopes defensive switch will make him a Frog

Posted Monday, Jun. 24, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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(Online update: Jacob Gnacinski ran a 4.68 40 at the TCU camp. Coaches wanted him to break the 4.6 mark to really be interested in him, which he did. Gnacinski said, “They said they really like me and look forward to offering me after watching a couple of games this year.”)

Jacob Gnacinski enters his senior season on the Fossil Ridge football team knowing that, if everything goes as he wishes, it will be his last season playing quarterback.

Gnacinski camped at TCU, his favorite college program, on June 14, hoping to show the Horned Frogs coaching staff that he has the skills to play for them next season.

However, if he were to pick up the coveted scholarship from TCU, it would be to play linebacker, not quarterback, for the Horned Frogs.

The only time Gnacinski has played linebacker was in middle school, he said, but he is confident he has the knowledge and ability to make the switch to the defensive side of the ball.

“I kind of understand linebacker because I have the footwork for it,” the 6-foot-2, 225 pound athlete said. “I’m more built like a linebacker.”

In his junior campaign, Gnacinski threw for over 1,800 yards and surpassed the double-digit mark in throwing touchdowns. He also ran for almost 400 yards and one touchdown.

Those stats do have the attention of a few other schools, who would prefer to land Gnacinski as a quarterback or athlete including Texas – San Antonio, Stephen F. Austin, Sam Houston State and North Texas. The quarterback also camped at Texas Tech, Baylor, UTSA and UNT before heading to the camp in Fort Worth.

It’s Gnacinski’s summer-best 4.6 second speed in the 40-yard dash that he hopes will win coaches over to pick him up as either a linebacker or quarterback.

However, his true hope is that it will impress TCU.

“UTSA is interested in me. SFA, UNLV, Sam Houston and UNT,” Gnacinski said. “I’m really interested in TCU right now, to be honest.”

Gnacinski’s love for the Horned Frogs came from assitant coach Stanley Moss, who was a tight end for TCU in the early 2000’s.

“I think that Jake is a really good athlete and he could do just about anything that any school would ask him to do,” Moss said. “Best case scenario, it would be great if he ended up a Frog as I’m a Frog guy myself. Whatever’s best for them and whatever’s best for him, but I think it would be a great fit.”

Moss said Gnacinski is a great fit for any school not only for his athletic abilities, but for the kind of guy he is in the locker room as well, allowing the coaching staff to hand some control over to the quarterback while they sort out other strategy.

“Whether it’s offense or defense, he gets the guys going and they seem to follow his lead because he’s one heck of a worker on top of that,” Moss said. “It’s good having a guy in that leadership role that actually works and the guys see him doing what he asks them to do.”

Even though TCU is asking him to venture into the unfamiliar and prove that he has the natural ability to become a Division I caliber linebacker, he was not nervous at the TCU camp. He was just doing what he does best.

“I know what abilities I have and what I’m capable of,” he simply stated.

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