A football player’s dream come true

Jacob Moore, better known as Jake to the Guilford student population, is a senior defensive lineman for the Guilford College football team. He grew up in a small town outside of Greensboro, and throughout his life has always been interested and involved with sports. 

“I started playing football because I wanted to be like my dad, my uncle, my grandfather, and even my cousins,” said Moore. “Majority of my family played in high school and growing up I thought those were the coolest stories, so I just had to have my own.” 

It was when he began developing many friendships within football that he realized that he definitely wanted to pursue it professionally. Throughout many interactions both on the field and in the locker rooms with fellow teammates, he developed an inseparable bond with it. 

“I started playing football in 2nd grade and I’ve been in love ever since,” stated Moore. “I really started taking football seriously around the time I made the middle school team.”

Jake played middle and high school football at Northern Guilford, at the time where it was considered a newer school. Witnessing the football program grow into one of the best in the state of North Carolina as an active member of the team, Moore was one of many athletes who helped shape Northern Guilford’s team into the impressive one it has today. 

Northern Guilford is currently a 3AA school, and Jake was a part of their 3AA state championship team in 2014. Their football team also made it to the state semifinals in three out of the four years he played. On top of the state championship, Jake went on to garner all-conference and all-county awards his senior year before coming to Guilford College. 

“These past few years have taught me so much I could write a book about my story at Guilford,” Moore commented. “Year after year there are new challenges and things to deal with and we constantly have to go through them as a team. At times it’s been incredibly frustrating but at times it’s been incredibly rewarding. I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything because of what it has taught me.” 

One of the many challenges the team has faced is COVID and the restrictions put on sports. Currently players are only allowed two people to watch them from the stands. 

“I’m a senior and I have worked tirelessly for years to have this opportunity,” Moore commented. “[Now] I have to choose two people to come to my games between my parents, grandparents, siblings, and other loved ones, when they all have sacrificed so much for me to get here.” 

Another frustrating aspect of the current COVID restrictions for many athletes, including Jake, is how new policies are not frequently explained comprehensively. An example of this is how 30% capacity, which is what North Carolina is allowing in their outdoor stadiums, would be 600 people, compared to the 180 tickets their team can give out at Guilford. In a time where regulations are crucial to keeping entire teams safe from illness, not having complete information can be extremely exasperating.

Although this is an incredibly difficult time for Jake in his senior year, he keeps reminding himself of the positives in the situation. 

“I’m constantly reminding myself that I’m incredibly blessed to be able to wake up and play,” he reflected.

Since our athletes have been faced with many trials with their sports seasons, they have been granted an extra year of eligibility. Jake plans to take advantage of that next year, where he will be wearing the number 67 on Guilford’s football field once again. 

After his final year at Guilford, Jake plans to keep football in his life. 

“Football has changed my life, and it’s been my dream since high school to become a successful coach, [helping] other kids get themselves the opportunities for a higher education,” he resolves.