PROSPER — It was a magical moment he’ll never forget. Surrounded by his closest friends, family and teammates, senior lacrosse player Jared Brock scribbled his signature across a piece of paper that would change his life.
As one of the original lacrosse players on the first team at Prosper High School, Jared is one of the captains and starting midfielders for the team. In his spare time, he also volunteers with the Prosper youth lacrosse league to help younger kids learn more about the growing sport.
The highlight of his high school career however, came on Wednesday, Feb. 7, when Jared became the first player in the history of the club to sign a National Letter of Intent to play college lacrosse.
“It’s amazing just to see how a regular kid like me could go off to play in college,” Jared said. “I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for my parents and coaches. It just shows all the hard work and dedication that got me here.”
Since starting kindergarten in Prosper, Jared is one of the few students who has spent his entire academic career in the Prosper school system. Throughout his life, he dabbled in several different sports, finding that he was quite the athlete at a young age.
But his world changed when one of his friends encouraged him to come out to play lacrosse with him one day. Something about the sport enticed him, so Jared decided to give it a try.
“After doing wrestling and football and track for a long time, combining that with lacrosse it just kind of clicked,” he said. “It was just a combination of all the sports that I’d played all throughout my life.”
“Jared is an athlete, so it just came natural that [his friends] reached out to him to play,” his mom Gina added. “I think when you talk with anyone who’s got a boy interested in playing a sport with a ball and a stick… it’s very appealing.”
But Jared wasn’t always the star midfielder he is today. In fact, when he first started, he had a little catching up to do with his teammates.
“I wasn’t very good at it at first,” he said. “The challenge of not being good at it at first, like with other sports, is what really drew me in.”
From the start of his freshman year with the PHS varsity team, Jared began perfecting his craft with the sport, practicing day in and day out to make sure he was ready to compete at the highest level during games. Over time he began catching the eye of college recruiting scouts, including schools such as Hendrix and Southwestern University.
Now in his senior year, Jared has made an impact on the lacrosse program, both on and off the field, and first-year coach John Moreno said Jared couldn’t be a better fit as a leader for the team.
“It’s really exciting for the program to get it’s first NCAA player to play at the collegiate level,” he said. “Jared is one of a kind with great character and integrity…he is a prime example of what every kid should strive to be.”
That leadership, partnered with Jared’s hard work and dedication to get better at the sport, led to his college offer from an NCAA institution — Piedmont College.
“All their facilities are amazing, and the guys are great. I Ioved it there, and that’s where I want to be,” Jared said.
Jared celebrated National Signing Day at a local restaurant, The Gin, in which the entire lacrosse program came out to watch him sign his NLI. Jared’s friends and family also came out for the big event, and even had a friend Facebook Live the signing for his family members that couldn’t make the trip.
He’d officially become a collegiate athlete.
But even more than a sport, or even a way to get to college, Jared said lacrosse is more than just a game to him. It’s given him the opportunity to make new friends, and create lasting relationships with the people he is closest to, including his father. Lacrosse has given them the chance to strengthen their father-son bond.
“I got to know my dad a lot better, and I don’t think I would have got to know him if it wasn’t for going on all those [recruiting trips] together,” Jared said. “All those little memories that we made together, they’re going to last a long time.”
“For me, being able to have a one-on-one conversation with my son without any distractions was really beneficial,” Troy Brock, Jared’s father said. “When you’re on an airplane or car for hours, or in the same hotel, you get to know someone a lot more deeply.”
“It’s just led Jared to the person he is today,” Gina added, fighting back tears. “He’s a leader, and he’s a humble kid and he works hard… he should get the kudos for that.”
Although he being the first to sign, Jared knows he won’t be the last, as the younger Prosper players are already receiving attention from colleges. For Moreno and the players he will be leaving behind, however, he has built a legacy that will remain in the back of everyone’s mind as he moves into the next phase of his life.
“I think Jared broke the ice… he’s building the legacy, which is really exciting. As the program gets more successful, more aspire to play at the collegiate level. I expect this to be a regular thing for our program.” Moreno said.
While at Piedmont, Jared said he plans to study Sports Administration and Fitness, and is excited for his new life in Georgia. He will finish out his senior season with the Prosper High School Eagles as both a mentor and a leader for those to follow in the future.
“[Lacrosse] has definitely shaped me into the man I am today. I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world.”