Over the past three seasons Dripping Springs senior running back Jake Cox has become a physical presence for the Tigers’ rushing attack. Going into his senior year, Cox looks forward to having his younger brother, junior running back Curtis Cox, join him in the backfield for the 2018 season.
Jake and Curtis Cox have been playing football together since Jake was in the 4th grade. Now, going into the 2018 season, the Cox brothers will be the focal point in the Tiger backfield. Being able to share the backfield and play with his brother during his senior season is what Jake has looked forward to the most this offseason.
“It’s been a big deal to me and especially now when we are in grade school,” Jake said about playing with his brother. “Brotherhood means a little bit more to you, especially since we are playing the same position and fighting for the same spot. It’s been fun, there has been a lot of trash talking at home.”
The Cox brothers will bring versatility to the Tigers backfield, with Jake being the more physical downhill runner, and Curtis being used as a scat-back. Jake described their duo as a thunder and lightning one-two punch.
“He is a lot more of a shifty back,” Jake said. “If we end up throwing the ball more he might see some more playing time. He’s got a little bit better hands.”
Growing up in Dripping Springs, Jake played the typical three sports of baseball, basketball and football at a young age. The game of football wasn’t fun for Jake in the beginning, as he wasn’t used to the physicality of the sport. But, after sticking with football, thanks to his parents, Jake has grown to love the physical part of the game. Now Jake thrives from initiating contact and bringing the boom to defenders trying to bring him to the ground.
“I really hated it in the beginning,” Jake said about playing football at a young age. “I wasn’t used to all the hitting. My parents made me stay with the game for a little while, and I was so young I didn’t really know, but I grew up and loved it. It’s a great way to get your energy out. When you’re a young dude you just kind of want to hit something and there is a way to do it where you aren’t going to get in trouble. It’s a part of the game, you can have fun doing it, and that’s why I fell in love with it.”
During this offseason Jake has been focusing on maintaining his playing weight of 195 lbs, while also trying to gain speed so he can get to the edge more this season. A part of his game that he wants to improve is his pass catching ability. A goal of Jake’s this summer is to catch 100 balls a day from the JUGS machine.
“Catching is going to be a big adjustment for me this year,” Jake said. “Sometimes I will work out of slot receiver or if we go five-wide, or catching the ball out of the backfield on swing routes. I know we are going to try to work in screen passes to the running back and stuff like that. So – my hands – I’m going to have to work on this summer.”
Not only is Jake working out at running back, but he has also seen some work on the defense side of the ball this offseason, something he hasn’t done since his freshman season.
“This spring ball I’ve worked a little bit more at linebacker, not as much as running back, but I’ve worked in some linebacker,” Jake said. “It’s definitely a lot different hitting on defense than you are on offense.”
Going into the 2018 season, the Tigers rushing attack will lean on Jake and Curtis to continue their run of district titles to three in a row and to make another run in the playoffs. Jake emphasized that the team’s biggest goal is to just go 1-0 each and every week.
“We definitely want to win district again this year, and for the third year in a row,” said Jake. “That’s a huge goal that we definitely want to do.”