Hendrich to continue football, academic career at Rose-Hulman
By CAREY FOX
Times Sports Editor
Northview senior Jacob Hendrich recently signed his college letter-of-intent to continue his football career on the gridiron at Rose-Hulman next season.
Hendrich is wrapping up an outstanding high school career on the wrestling mat, football field and classroom at Northview.
“Jacob is dedicated and works hard at whatever he does—whether that is school or athletics. Add that to his physical and mental abilities, and it resulted in probably one of the best linebackers in school history,” Northview football coach Mark Raetz said. “His strength and agility from years in wrestling and in the weight room, along with his intelligence from on-field experience and film study are aspects that contributed to his success.”
Hendrich is set to join an Engineers squad that reached the NCAA Division III Playoffs for the first time in program history last year. Rose-Hulman finished the season with an 8-3 overall record.
As a senior captain, Hendrich piled up a team-high 83 tackles for the 6-4 Knights and he posted 61 solo tackles to lead the squad as well. Hendrich was third on the team with six tackles for loss. During his junior campaign, Hendrich posted 75 tackles and had five tackles for loss.
For his career, Hendrich had 203 total tackles and averaged nearly eight tackles per game.
Hendrich burst onto the scene as a sophomore and immediately began to contribute despite battling older, bigger players on the offense for opposing squads.
“Jacob continued to improve and progress over the years. Not just physically, but also mentally. He started for us at about 170 pounds and then played last season closer to 200 pounds,” Raetz said. “There is also no substitute for the amount of experience he gained. Jacob played in a lot of varsity football games for us—and was a part of a lot of wins.”
Despite his original lack of overall size, Hendrich’s ability to pursue a ball carrier and bring them to the turf was beyond his years according to his high school coach.
“As a sophomore, Jacob was still pretty light for inside linebacker. But he has always been a strong tackler—I think from all of his time in wrestling—and he is smart,” Raetz noted. “Jacob always knew what was going on during the game—not just with our defense, but also with what our opponents were doing as well.”
Rose-Hulman’s academic regimen is second to none and Hendrich will fit right in after receiving multiple all-state academic awards during football and wrestling. For Raetz, he got a close look at Hendrich’s ability in the classroom as well as on the football field.
“I had the opportunity to not just coach Jacob in football, but I also had him in class more than once. He is a very intelligent kid—always prepared and thorough with his work. He carries the same work ethic and demeanor to the game field,” Raetz said. “He is definitely one of the top student-athletes I’ve coached. He was consistently named to all-area and all-state academic teams. Later this month, he will also be honored as one of the winners of the National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete Award. Only the best student-athletes in the state receive that honor.
“I think Rose-Hulman is a perfect fit for Jacob. It is one of the top universities in the nation, and at the same time they have an outstanding football program,” Raetz added. “Jacob will fit in well with their football team, and I expect him to excel in that environment.”