Whether it’s on the Gridiron tossing defensive lineman to protect his quarterback, or on the track as a shotput and discus tosser, Hononegah junior Jacob Klink is exceptional at throwing weight.
“I’m a very competitive person so having that during the offseason for football that’s the whole reason I started, but as I kept getting better at it I realized, I kind of like this too,” said Klink.
He says there are more similarities to the two sports than most people realize.
“That’s probably the biggest misconception of the sport, too,” Klink said. “Is that it’s just a bunch of big fat guys throwing a giant rock. Well, yeah, we’re pretty big, but it’s like a little dance routine. We’ve got to be able to get around the ring smoothly and quickly.”
Klink has taken his abilities to new heights, taking home first place in both events at the Illinois Track & Field Junior Olympics.
“After the second throw I hit a personal best of 16 feet,” said Klink. “And I was like, ‘Well, I think I won now. Let’s just keep trying to improve.”
His two victories qualified him for the National Junior Olympics that are held in Houston, Texas at the beginning of August.
“Anything national, if I didn’t have nerves there would be something wrong with me,” he said. “So knowing that I have a chance to go in and compete for the dub is pretty encouraging but also very motivating, like, ‘alright, let’s go we’ve got to get this down.”
Leading up to the national meet, he’s been training like a machine.
“I leave the house at 4:30 in the morning. I go lift, and then I have football practice from about 7:30 to 11:30. So I have football practice, then another lift, and then that evening I’ll throw for about two hours with my throwing coach. An hour for shotput, and hour for discus roughly.”
He may have some nerves, but he is confident in his abilities to perform well.
“I’m going to go shotput, top 5. Discus top 10.”