CLEAR LAKE, Iowa – If you went to a Clear Lake football game Jaylen DeVries was a lot of fun to watch – unless you were on the opposing sideline. His talent caught the attention of college recruits and now he gets to take the game to the next level.
“To see all of the hard work that he’s put in – him and his teammates – and to have this opportunity to go on and play at the next level is a special ordeal,” his father said.
After putting pen to paper in front of dozens of his friends and family, Jaylen DeVries will play football at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. After numerous talks with the coaching staff, they view him as a fit for quarterback.
“They see me competing right away,” he said. “They’re going to tell everyone that so obviously I just want to go in there and do the best I can and see what happens.”
He says that Carbondale is the perfect fit for him, but Clear Lake will remain deep in his hears as he moves to the Land of Lincoln.
“It’s been a great four years of high school….football is my favorite and I just have a lot of memories with my best friends on the field. It just really means a lot to be a part of a program like this.”
Another thing that has made his high school career so memorable was playing for his dad, Jared, a former Iowa Hawkeye, and Detroit Lion.
“It’s been unique. Not everyone gets that chance and I think it’s been a great relationship,” Jaylen said. “We’re able to balance football and home life and there’s been a lot of conversations at home about the first play of the game – what that’s going to be and you know it’s just been really awesome.”
“It’s a special relationship. It’s a challenging one as well,” Jared added. “You’ve got to handle it the right way. At times I probably talked a little too much football and not enough parent, but it was nice to come home and go over game plans, opponents, and just have those small conversations outside of practice.”
Jaylen is not quite finished with his Clear Lake uniform as he still has the remainder of basketball and track season ahead.