One season ago, Jake Froschauer was an undersized sophomore at Summit High School in New Jersey and he was the Hilltoppers’ backup quarterback.
When the Summit varsity starter went down in the first quarter of the opening game with an injury, Froschauer instantly found himself under center.
“I was pretty much thrown in there,” he said. “At first I was very flustered being thrown straight in from the freshman speed of the game and then trying to adjust to the varsity speed of the game. That was a big jump for me, but from there on I pretty much was responsible for carrying the team, essentially, and the seniors were very good about carrying me along with them and helping me stay comfortable throughout the rest of the season.”
All things considered, it was an excellent sophomore season for Froschauer and the Hilltoppers.
The powerhouse program in northern New Jersey finished 9-2 and has gone 65-4 with three state championshiops and four state championship game appearances since 2009.
“I think I progressed as the season went along,” Froschauer said. “The first game I started, it was different adjusting to the crowd and all of that. I think I got the hang of it about midway toward the end of the season. One game I really learned from was my third start, against Cranford. I ended up throwing 4 interceptions that game and we ended up losing the state’s longest winning streak. That was a hard moment for me, but I like to look back on it as something I learned from.”
Froschauer wound up completing 43 of 85 passes for 568 yards and 7 touchdowns. Utilizing his standout speed, he rushed for 92 yards on 21 carries.
Not only does he have much more knowledge as he prepares for his junior season at Summit, Froschauer has much better size at 6-foot-3, 180 pounds. Last year, he was 6-foot-0, 148 pounds.
“With my size, I bloomed a little bit late but it was definitely worth it,” Froschauer said. “As a team this season, take it game by game and hopefully make it to the state championship. Individually, I’m just trying to become a better leader, help out the team, rally around the guys, the younger guys especially. Help them adjust to the varsity game. I also plan on running the ball more. Last year, I was 30 pounds lighter and I was essentially getting tossed around like a ragdoll. It was pretty bad. This year I am bigger, I have more confidence and I want to use my legs to help alongside with my arm.”
To prepare for the season, Froschauer traveled to Baltimore this summer for his first NFA OSD camp.
“My quarterback coach, Gil Owren, pointed me to NFA,” Froschauer said. “I wasn’t mentally as strong as I wanted as a sophomore and I wanted to work on that for the upcoming season. We are also using the R4 system for the first time this year. The path progression has really helped me out. Dub Maddox is just a football guru, he really knows what he’s talking about, along with Darin Slack.”
Froschauer was invited to the Duel and he finished third among incoming juniors.
“I think I stacked up pretty well against the competition at the Duel,” Froschauer said. “I also talked to a lot of guys there, learned a few things, exchanged some techniques. I felt pretty confident with myself.”
He has two more years of high school football at Summit, but Froschauer has long had an eye on the next level.
“I think about it every day, I’m not going to lie,” he said. “It’s something I’ve always wanted to do. I’ve always had the dream. Since I was a little kid, I’ve always had the dream to play for Notre Dame. That’s something to aspire to. I’m not sure if that’s quite going to happen, but I’ve always dreamed of playing at the next level, which I’m confident I can do.”
Carrying a 3.91 GPA, Froschauer said Ivy League schools are also appealing because they’re close to home and offer quality educations.