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Jack Adams of Hinsdale Central escapes Hinsdale South defender Chuck Hunter (82). | Patrick Gleason ~ For Sun-Times Media
An outstanding senior season can catapult a marginal prospect into a Division I recruit.
It happened to Hinsdale Central senior running back Jack Adams, who entered last football season with some interest from Division III schools mainly on the East Coast.
But the 5-foot-10, 185-pound Clarendon Hills resident enjoyed a breakout season with 187 carries for 1,151 yards and 11 touchdowns for the Class 8A playoff-qualifying Red Devils (7-3).
He was named all-West Suburban Silver after averaging 127.9 yards per game.
On Feb. 6, he signed with Dayton, which competes in the Pioneer League of the FCS Division. Adams chose Dayton over conference rival Butler and Division III Tufts.
“It came down to Dayton,” Adams said. “It was not a last-second decision, but I decided pretty much after my (official) visit. I liked it.”
Dayton returns several players from the Chicago area, but Adams is expected to be the only Flyer from a West Suburban Silver school. Last season, Dayton players from Downers Grove South of the West Suburban Gold included defensive back Danny Leach and offensive lineman Shane Companey.
“I like the kids (at Dayton), the facilities and the football program,” said Adams, who rushed for just 90 yards on 20 carries his junior season. “I really connected with the football coaches.”
This winter, Adams started on Hinsdale Central’s wrestling team at 182 pounds. His career ended one win away from qualifying for the Class 3A Maine East Sectional. He lost the third place match at the Hinsdale Central Regional to Downers North’s Jake Lommatzsch, 5-2.
For the first time, Adams will go out for track and field this spring. He decided to become a sprinter after one of his assistant football coaches, former Devils star Alex Perkowski, joined the team as a sprint coach.