Washburn dual-sport standout Jace Williams draws NFL interest
TOPEKA, Kan. (WIBW) - Washburn dual-sport athlete Jace Williams is writing the final chapter of a standout career with the Ichabods — but he’s hoping his last season in Topeka isn’t the end of his football career.
“We’ve had a pretty neat tradition of guys that have gone on to the NFL and been successful, and Jace is another one of those guys,” head football coach Craig Schurig said.
The super senior brings a unique skill set to the Ichabods, and it’s catching the eyes of NFL scouts.
“I just gotta go out and work every day,” Williams said. “That’s what they want to see. So I try not to think about, ‘Oh, so-and-so is showing up to practice today.’ I just know I’m going to go to practice and do what I have done and continue doing.”
“He’s got a really good catch radius, runs routes like a receiver but is built like a tight end,” Schurig said. “He’s tall, he has a basketball frame, and he played basketball, was a very good basketball player here.”
The six-foot-five, 230 lb. Hutchinson, Kansas-native averaged five points and four boards for Washburn’s MIAA Tournament-winning team last season. His 56 career blocks ranks 14th all-time for the Ichabods.
Williams says his success on the court has contributed to success on the field — and vice versa.
“It definitely taught me a lot of body control,” he said. “Being able to take stuff I learned there, and take stuff I learned on the field to help me in both sports, it was a lot of fun to see the correlations between the two.”
He hauled in 19 catches for 302 yards and five touchdowns in 2019, adding another three rushing.
With his childhood dream of becoming a professional athlete within reach, Williams is focused on the task at hand.
“I would love to make the playoffs, make a run in the playoffs,” he said. “A winning team has got to have good players on it. I’d like to do my part to obviously help us win, but I don’t think I need to try to do too much or try to expect too much. Just go play the game and see what happens.”
Williams caught four passes for 75 yards and two TDs in Washburn’s 76-12 win over Lincoln last week.
The Ichabods kick off in their home opener 6:00 p.m. Thursday against Central Missouri.
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