Jake McDevitt is the subject of our Alumni Profile today. McDevitt is studying Sports Management and playing soccer at Neumann College. Here is our conversation.
What factors helped you choose Neumann? Neumann stuck out more than the average school. When I began looking at schools I tried to put soccer aside and choose a school that felt right to me. After visiting Neumann I felt at home and soccer kinda just fell into place.
You will have a new head coach for your sophomore season. Since Hollenback was already on the staff, will it be easier to adjust? Coach Tim Hollenback is more than ready to become a head coach. He was a great player and he will make a great head coach. With that being said, he knows what it takes to take an average team to a great team. With Coach Hollenback leading us throughout the spring, I am looking forward to this upcoming fall. Other teams should be prepared to see a new look to Neumann Soccer, with Coach Hollenback as the man in charge.
Favorite class in college so far? I would have to say Intro to Sports Management.
Favorite class at CHS? American Law my senior year. It was a great way to end the day and Mrs. Quinn always made it interesting!
Favorite post-game snack or meal? Many would say it is a weird combo, but Chicken Parm and a side of home fries from the diner.
Favorite song and/or artist? I listen to a wide range of music so therefore I honestly don’t have a favorite song. But, my favorite artist would have to be Bruce Springsteen.
Favorite movie? Either Goodfellas or Miracle.
Favorite Jersey Shore spot and why? Ocean City NJ, there is no other place like it. From Mac & Manco’s Pizza, to Johnson’s Popcorn, to the great beaches. There is nothing like it.
How did you first get interested in soccer? I started playing when I was in Kindergarten. Growing up, I always wanted to be a hockey player, but soccer soon took over and I have always enjoyed playing. Just the feeling of going out there and playing is second to none. I would have to say that I credit my first club coach here in Cinnaminson, Ken Jones, for keeping me interested in the game, because I believe you always have to start somewhere and it starts when you are very young.
Who was the biggest influence on your athletic career at CHS? I would have to say my dad. He has always been there for me no matter the what. He was at mostly every game so he would tell me what he see’s, and that includes a few long car rides home after him telling me that wasn’t even close to my best game. He is always honest with me and upfront, which is what I like. I don’t think I could ever thank him enough for what he has done for me. He has still continued his support at Neumann and attends most of the games.
Most memorable moment from athletic career at CHS? I would have to say beating Delran twice my sophomore year. The first game was at there place in a heavy down poor. I was actually quite surprised we played to be honest, but I scored the game winning goal off a throw in and I had no idea what to do I kind of just froze in the moment.
You tied for team lead in goals scored frosh season. How do you hope to build on that next year? I am a kid that always look to consistently improve. Even with me tied for the team lead, I honestly thought I could have finished a lot more chances. This upcoming season I am just looking to win more as a team. We had 10 wins last year and I am more focused on improving that number and hopefully the goals will come.
Was it difficult to adjust to the college game? It was a lot faster, you have to be able to be less predictable. Playing for a high level club team and then a high level summer region team, helped out tremendously. Playing with older kids always raises your level of play and that helped me adjust to the speed of the college game. The only difficult part was to learning how to play with my teammates.
Are you playing for a club team this summer? If so, which one? What do you want to work on the most in those games? At the moment I am still looking for a team to play for this summer. I will be looking to improve on my fitness, last year I started in every game and in the Championship game versus Marywood I ended up playing the entire game including the double overtimes. Fitness at the college level is very important and I will look to build on that this summer.
Won CSAC frosh year. What was that feeling like? My junior year of high school we lost to West Deptford in penalty kicks for the championship. It was by far the most depressing moment of my athletic career. Winning this season, it was a feeling that not many know how it feels. To be able to say you’re on top and have something to show for all of the hard work we put in throughout the year is an awesome feeling. We were tied against Marywood at 1 after two overtimes and in all honesty I began to have flashbacks of my Junior year and it was nice to have the exact opposite this year. Hopefully, next year I can experience the same thing.
What was it like to take part in the NCAAs? Participating in the National tournament was possibly the best part of my athletic career so far. It was a six hour bus ride up, with stops for food on the way, it was a great experience. We played up in Babson College in Massachusetts. It was about 20 minutes outside of downtown Boston. The night before our game we went into Boston as a team, got dinner and walked around Fenway Park. Unfortunately, our season came to an end up there, but overall it was a great experience. Hopefully we can back there again next year.
Image courtesy of Jake McDevitt