Keller Central savors its season-opening victory against Birdville

Keller Central coach Bart Helsley and linebacker Jacob Felczak discuss the Chargers' 17-16 win over Birdville.
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Keller Central coach Bart Helsley and linebacker Jacob Felczak discuss the Chargers' 17-16 win over Birdville.

High School Football

This linebacker goes from Clark Kent in class to Superman on the field

By Randy Sachs

Special to the Star-Telegram

October 04, 2017 12:49 PM

There are no phone booths, only locker rooms, but Keller Central senior linebacker Jacob Felczak seems to transform from Clark Kent to Superman.

The otherwise quiet Felczak is able to flip a switch and become one of the defensive leaders for Central.

Central head coach Bart Helsley said his linebacker is a “blue collar-type player. Quietly confident.”

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He’s not an introvert necessarily, as he was part of the Central homecoming court of candidates recently.

“I guess being a quiet leader is part of my personality,” Felczak said. “Blue collar is, I guess, how I see myself. I’m not really that guy to get loud.”

He might just be quiet because he’s thinking.

Felczak is prone to spending lots of time watching film to understand opposing offenses. He said even in little league football, he had a knack for reading a play and finding the ball.

“I think it mentally helps me to play a lot quicker,” he said.

Our classroom was blessed with a visit from the whole CHS crew. #FootballPlayersAreGreatReaders #WeLoveOurCHSReaders @CHSChargerFB

— LSE_Mrs.Mason (@LSE_Mrs_Mason) August 31, 2017

But even those early years in Keller Youth Association football were a learning experience.

“I’ve been playing since fourth grade, but at other positions. I was a fat kid and played as a lineman. I played receiver when I slimmed down,” he said.

Linebacker was a good fit for Felczak, though. In addition to his quiet and methodical preparation, Felczak has another key attribute.

“I like to hit,” he said.

That desire for contact spills over to his love for another sport, too.

Felczak, who plays at 6-0, 205, drops about 10 pounds to wrestle at 195 for the Chargers.

“I think it helps both ways,” he said of playing both sports. “It’s a confidence thing, being able to start in my sophomore year and go against older guys.”

Confidence on the field has been a big key for Felczak, too. He takes a lot of pride in playing with confidence and not having to think too much, instead reacting to the game.

“Honestly, I think just playing with more confidence is what I improved upon the most over last year,” he said.

That confidence will hopefully help lead the Chargers to another playoff appearance and keep Felczak from having to enter the wrestling room too soon later in the fall.

He said although the Chargers are 2-2, it’s a big improvement over last season’s 0-3 start before they took second place in District 3-6A but lost in the bi-district round to Arlington Bowie.

“I think anyone can win district,” Felczak said. “We’ve just got to get better each week.”