2020 TN OL Isn't Your Typical Freshman

March 9, 2017

Recruiting is starting earlier and earlier as colleges battle it out for the top talent in the nation each year. It’s not uncommon to see a freshman or sophomore in high school earn an offer here or there, but 2020 Franklin (Tenn.) offensive lineman Jake Wray (Pictured on the left) is different than his peers.

The 6-foot-5, 275-pounder holds offers and some of are from some of the top programs in the country. Alabama, Georgia, Louisville, LSU, Miami, Ole Miss, Oregon, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas are a few of the schools that have extended an offer to the freshman.

“It’s a pretty awesome experience,” Wray told Irish Sports Daily. I have really enjoyed it, and I didn’t expect any of it. I still can’t believe any of it. It’s incredible for this to happen to someone my age.”

 Wray is no stranger to the recruiting process as his older brother Max is one of the top offensive linemen in the 2018 class. However, a SEC school was his first offer, and Wray almost lost his mind.  

“Ole Miss was the first school to offer me, and I was freaking out,” laughed Wray. “I couldn’t really handle any of it. It hit me about two hours after they offered.”  

The Franklin star has already got a jump on his recruitment by visiting some of the top programs in the country. Max committed to Georgia last winter, so these trips are about finding the right fit for him.

“This year, I went to Tennessee-Missouri, LSU-Alabama, and Alabama-Auburn,” explained Wray. “I went to the Tennessee’s Junior Day earlier this month, and then I was at Louisville’s Junior Day last weekend. I am going visit Colorado State this summer.

“It’s really fun to meet all the coaches and to start developing a relationship. I always enjoy going on visits, and it’s just fun to get to know the different coaches.”

I like the feeling of hitting people. - 2020 OL Jake Wray
While he still only a freshman, Wray does see a balance of programs that are trying to find out the type of person he is, while others are recruiting him hard.  

“It’s a mix,” he stated. “They are making sure they develop a relationship, but it’s not all about football. They will ask me if I have any questions and they want me to come to their school.”

With one year of varsity football under his belt, Wray feels the transition went well, and he gets to do what he enjoys the most, which is to hit people.  

“I feel I am an aggressive player,” said Wray. “I really like getting after it. I like the feeling of hitting people.”

The Wray brothers lead Franklin to a 10-3 record before they fell to Notre Dame cornerback Donte Vaughn’s alma mater, Whitehaven in the playoffs.

The experience of playing together is something both players have embraced, but they weren’t sure it’d happen on the offensive line until Max made a position switch.

“It’s awesome,” Wray said of playing with his brother. “Max and I talked about playing together when we were younger. We didn’t really play football early, but we always said if we played football, it would be cool to be on the same team.

“We didn’t expect to play on the line together because Max played quarterback. Now that we both play tackle, it’s awesome.”

Regarding Notre Dame, the Tennessee doesn’t know much about the program, but he does know the Irish have tradition.

“I am not too familiar with Notre Dame’s program,” admitted Wray. “I do know about its success and what they’re doing right now. I know Notre Dame has a great amount of tradition.

“They are a school I’d be interested in learning more about.”

While the 2020 recruiting class won’t sign for almost three years, Wray already knows a few factors he is already looking at to help him with his decision.  

“The coaching staff is a big part of it for me, Wray said. “I want to know if the players enjoy playing for the coaches. I want to see the atmosphere at the school and if the atmosphere is really electric and fits my personality.

“I want to see if the school has the major I want too. I want to major in Sports Administration.”

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