Jacob McHone didn’t begin his recruiting process until the early stages of January, but the late start didn’t stop McHone from finding the perfect fit.
The senior from North Surry made things official on Thursday when he signed his letter of intent to play football at Brevard College next year. It felt like the right decision for McHone because of all that Brevard had to offer in addition to a spot on the football team.
“It’s the one place I visited and didn’t have any doubts about it,” McHone said. “I felt comfortable there, and after just one visit, I had that feeling like this was the place for me. It reminded me of home.”
McHone doesn’t hold back how much he loves the outdoors, and spending the next four years of his life surrounded by the Blue Ridge Mountains was an opportunity he couldn’t let pass him by. His biggest outdoor passion is fishing, and McHone can’t wait to bait a hook on the French Broad River.
McHone plans on majoring in Environmental Studies at Brevard. He gets to step right into his major once he arrives on campus, which has him excited for the academic aspects of college around the corner.
“I just love to be outside,” McHone said. “It’s going to be great to be in those kinds of classes right away. I’ve got a Geology class right away. I get to go to Ecuador in the summer, but the fishing is what really sold me.”
The academics are a chief reason McHone selected Brevard over Averett College and NC Wesleyan. He and his parents are also appreciative that McHone gets to stay in a small-town community for the next four years.
“Brevard is just a nice little town,” said Jimmy McHone, Jacob’s father. “I went to Western Carolina for college, but I had never been to Brevard until that visit. It reminded us a lot of Mount Airy, and I think that’s something that helped us all feel very comfortable with Jacob’s decision.”
On the football field, McHone was recruited to Brevard primarily as a linebacker. It’s the position he played most frequently at North Surry, and McHone was a WPAC All-Conference selection in 2015. He recorded 64 tackles and two fumble recoveries for the Greyhounds last season.
However, McHone’s versatility could pave the road to a variety of roles on the Brevard football team next year. Tornado coaches told him to expect some time at the tight end and fullback positions in addition to his defensive responsibilities.
“I told them I’ll play anywhere they need me,” McHone said. “I played a little bit of offense this season and they know that I’m willing to do whatever it takes.”
McHone transferred to North Surry from West Stokes his junior year, and this versatility was something that immediately stuck out to Greyhound head coach, Danny Lyons.
“When Jacob enrolled at North Surry, we needed that kind of depth and versatility on the team,” Lyons said. “With other kids like that, you have to worry about effort some times, but we never had to worry about that with Jacob.”
Reach Jackson at 415-4702 and on twitter @jacksonfuller16