Senior Running Back Isaiah Jacobs a Top D-1 Prospect, Looks to Get Rams Back to State Title

By Mike Moguin
GTR Sports Writer

Photo by Mike Moguin for Owasso Rambler
READY TO RUN: Isaiah Jacobs hopes to carry the Rams to a state championship in 2019.

Plenty of firepower returns to Owasso’s arsenal this season. Among the weapons is running back Isaiah Jacobs (5’11”, 208, senior), who is being heavily recruited by more than a dozen Division-I schools. Included among them are Oklahoma State, Arkansas, Michigan, Mississippi and Nebraska.
“It’s a blessing,” Jacobs said. “Just the fact that one school sees something in me, sees some potential is just a blessing and I’m glad that they seek to come see me, hit me up and text me throughout this process and I hope for more things to come.”
It’s easy to see what would be drawing the magnitude of such programs to Jacobs.
After missing the Rams’ first five games due to injury last season, he ran for 1,024 yards on 151 carries and scored 10 touchdowns, including three 200-plus yard games, one which came in the playoffs.
Jacobs has another advantage. His older brother, Josh, was a standout at McLain in 2015, played D-I football at Alabama and was a first-round draft choice of the NFL’s Oakland Raiders last spring.
“It’s really special, especially since that wasn’t always the plan for him to even go to college,” Isaiah said of Josh. “So, the fact that he went over the expectations and standards he set for himself was really amazing. It sets an easier pathway for me where I can get better exposure. But, I still have to put in the work.
“I’m just proud of him and hope to see him be successful,” he added.
Along with his brother, the younger Jacobs likes Alvin Kamara of the New Orleans Saints and Mark Ingram of the Baltimore Ravens as his favorite NFL running backs.
Football, he said, is about “basically what you put in, you get out. It’s almost really in every aspect in life. But, I feel like it’s a getaway. Any pain or anything you are going through, you can lay it out on the field without there being any problem. I guess just the strain of it, you grind to a certain point, you start to see results and you feel happy and peace within yourself.”
Having to sit out the first five games in 2018 was frustrating for Jacobs, especially since the Rams had won state the previous year and went 2-3 in that stretch. Two of those losses came at the hands of rivals Broken Arrow and Union.
“I knew our chemistry was there and everything, yet those two games were totally different,” Jacobs said. “Also, it was frustrating seeing my team hurting because I wasn’t there. So, I was happy to get back out there and do what I can.
“It was much of a relief,” he added. “When I got back, we streaked for a certain amount of games. It was just a great impact for me to carry that leadership on the field.”
Owasso lost to eventual Class 6AI state champion Broken Arrow, 47-20, at home in week two last season. But when the two teams met in the state semifinal at The University of Tulsa’s Chapman Stadium, the Rams only lost to the Tigers, 10-7.
The difference was having people healthy in the playoff game.
“In that first game, we were missing three or four starters,” Jacobs said. The difference in the game changed because once you’re playing in the semifinals, we had all those players back.”
Unfortunately, Owasso did lose players to injury in that game, including Jacobs on an attempted scoring drive at the 15-yard line late in the first half.
“I wish that injury didn’t occur so I could have kept going,” he said.
The drive ended in a blocked field goal attempt for the Rams.
Owasso believes it can win its second state title in three seasons. This year’s team is also different than the 2017 squad.
“I see much potential in every single person on the team,” he said. “From the O-Line to the D-Line, DB, CB, to the quarterbacks and our wide receivers this year, I think that will make us ten times better. Last year, we had a problem connecting the chemistry with the wide receiver and that made the defense load the box on me. So, even coming back, I still took more hits than needed. Now, in our passing game, I believe we’re going to be a dual threat and I feel like everybody is going to bring it. Everybody’s mindset is different. They attack everything in practice. So, as a team, we’re going to be good.”
Jacobs sees the toughest foe will be everybody on the team itself.
“I think the only competition is ourselves,” Jacobs said. “If we lose, it’s because we beat ourselves and we did not work. I feel like that’s the only way we’ll be able to lose.”