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December 7, 2012

For Jack, Army Bowl a dream come true





MORE: U.S. Army All-American Bowl


Growing up in football-crazy, SEC-territory Dacula, Ga., Myles Jack has certainly seen his fair share of U.S. Army All-Americans.


Four-star Rajion Neal, five-star Marcus Lattimore, four-star Storm Johnson -- Jack watched them all.


And as their high school careers came to an end, they always ended up one place he only dreamed of one day attending: The U.S. Army All-American Bowl.


"Growing up seeing older guys, guys that you looked up to that are like the stars, especially in Georgia, they all played in that game," Jack said. "The big guys like Rajion Neal who plays at Tennessee, the guys like Marcus Lattimore, Storm Johnson, guys like that. I just looked up to them and everything."


So it was fitting, then, that on the day Jack found out he would soon enter the same conversation as those three high school stars, he was asleep and wasn't sure if his invite to the prestigious bowl was dream or reality.


"It was kind of funny," said Jack, a four-star linebacker who moved from Georgia to Washington before the ninth grade. "I was asleep and everything and I guess my mom came in and told me. But I thought I had a dream that I was told it. It was kind of weird, because I woke up and I was like, 'Did I get nominated?'


He went on with his day, still wondering if the news was true or not, when his phone rang.


"I got a call from a reporter and he said congratulations and stuff," Jack said. "And I was like, 'What?' And he was like, 'You got nominated.' And I was like, 'Oh, OK.' And I went to talk to my mom and she was like, 'Yeah, I told you.'


"So it was crazy."

So crazy, in fact, that Jack still can hardly believe he's accepting an Army Bowl All-American jersey at his Bellevue (Wash.) High School on Friday morning.


To go from a young pup in SEC territory watching games on TV to dominating high school football fields up in the Pacific Northwest to receiving such a high honor just days after winning a state title is something he, literally, never could have dreamed of.


"I guess you can say I sort of had a coming out party this year," Jack said. "This year went picture perfect. Beating everybody -- our year was perfect. It was a good year."


Now the only thing left for him to do is figure out where he's going to spend the next four years of his life after the big bowl game.

Jack is still committed to UCLA, and has been since June. But he's visited Washington around a dozen times, and said he would like to take all five of his official visits before he really solidifies his Bruins verbal.


"UCLA, I'm pretty much 100 percent (committed)," Jack said. "I just want to see -- you know, I made my decision so early and everything, I just want to come in and make sure I feel the same way I did. I do still feel that way, but I just have to get back on that campus and see what it's like there again and compare it to other schools.


"Because what I felt at UCLA, I want to see if I feel that anywhere else. Because really, it was a feeling for me. The coaches and football play a big part in it, but it's just kind of a feeling you get on campus. And I just want to see if I get that same feeling on any other school or campus."


Jack has probable official visits lined up to UCLA, Mississippi State and Washington so far, although he's unsure of when those trips will actually take place.


But right now, in early December, he's just soaking in the fresh accolade of receiving his Army Bowl invite.


"Oh man, that's just wow," Jack said of playing in that game. "That's going to be like a dream come true."












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