Bartels Turning Heads

2014 quarterback Jake Bartels of Nazareth Academy in LaGrange Park, Ill., talks to FOXSports NEXT about the recruiting process and much more.

2014 Nazareth Academy quarterback Jake Bartels of LaGrange Park, Ill., is turning heads during his junior season.

"We had homecoming this week so that was a lot of fun," Bartels said. "The game was good, we won by a pretty good amount but had bad weather though."

And what makes the season better, is that Bartels is helping Nazareth Academy finish out the season strong.

"I think I have played well this year so far," Bartels said. "As an offense we have been able to put together some solid games as far as putting up quality points."

He added, "I think myself along with the players around me have played well this year."

Bartels is a two sport standout, excelling at both baseball and football -- and knows playing both has made him a better athlete.

"I think my biggest strength on the field is definitely my arm strength and athletic ability," Bartels said. "I am also a pitcher so I think that has helped me big time as far as my arm strength."

He continued, "This season I have been working hard at trying to improve on my footwork and mental aspect of the game."

But with two sports, comes having to focus on both -- and didn't allow Bartels to attend any summer camps.

"I didn't get to any camps this summer for football, although I work with Jeff Christensen in the winter," Bartels said. "It gets tough in the summer because baseball really starts to heat up."

Even though Bartels focused on baseball recruiting last summer, he has something different in mind for the summer upcoming.

"Recruiting has been going really well for baseball," Bartels said. "I worked pretty hard this summer getting exposure and this summer I am going to aim more towards football."

But has Bartels thought about which sport(s) he might pursue?

"I have thought about playing both baseball and football in college," Bartels said. "Potentially at a higher academic level school that would allow me to play both."

Both baseball and football Bartels has received recruiting interest from.

"For baseball I have heard from Notre Dame, Boston College, UIC, UCF, Valparaiso, Illinois State, Virginia Tech, Eastern Illinois, Western Michigan, Bradley, Western Kentucky, and Michigan State," Bartels said. "For football I know that Harvard has talked to my coach about me."

He added, "I have not really put myself out there yet for football yet."

Bartels is working on his midseason highlight tape in hopes of getting his name out there a bit more on the gridiron.

"I will probably end up sending it to Big Ten schools, Ivy league schools, and just as many coaches as I can," Bartels said.

In the meantime, Bartels has his goals set high for the rest of the season.

"My goals are to help my team make the playoffs and make a good run," Bartels said. "We play in a really tough conference so I believe that we can make a good run in the playoffs."

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