2008 Focus: Vince Jordan

Mount Gilead, N.C. -- On April 29th, 2004, N.C. 24/27 through Montgomery County was formally named Bob Jordan Highway in honor of Robert B. (Bob) Jordan III, former state senator and lieutenant governor.

Jordan earned his bachelor of science degree in Forestry from NC State with honors in 1954, and he is currently a member of NC State's Board of Trustees. Jordan Hall, which houses environmental sciences, forestry and research at NC State, was named for the Jordan family. In 2005, the Jordan family gave NC State a $1.5 million gift to benefit the NC State College of Natural Resources.

The family business, Jordan Lumber & Supply, is the largest privately-owned lumber company on the east coast, and with his wealth Jordan has continued to give back to the community.

A native of Mount Gilead, Jordan donated the funds necessary for West Montgomery High School to build a state-of-the-art weightroom and indoor practice facility, as the small, 1-A school is one of the only public high schools to have such a facility.

"It's really a blessing," said West Montgomery head coach and athletic director Elbert Thomas. "That family is great, and they are quality people."

Bob Jordan's grandson, Vince Jordan, is West Montgomery's best player as he led the Warriors on defense and offense in 2006 from his halfback and linebacker positions.

"Vince means a lot to our football team," said coach Thomas. "He's a special athlete that you very seldom get. This only happens every once and a while, and I'm so lucky that it has happened to us.

"His stats are legit. His 40 times, his vertical leap, his bench press... all of his stats are legit. He'll go down to Richmond County for the Shrine Bowl combine on the 24th and show it... he's a helluva football player. I'm really interested to see what he's going to do down at Richmond County."

"I'm hoping to be in the top five at the event, if not the top player," Jordan said when asked about the upcoming Shrine Bowl combined. "It's hand-timed, so I'm hoping for a 4.28 or 4.3 in the 40."

Jordan might be pound-for-pound the state's top athlete. On January 27th, he attended the 2007 PrepStar Magazine Elite Football Combine that was held in Charlotte, North Carolina. Event officials measured athletes before the players participated in the drills all combines feature: bench press (185 pounds), vertical jump, pro shuttle, and 40-yard dash (string-timed).

Jordan, who checked in at 5-foot-10.5 and 200 pounds, completed 25 reps of 185 pounds on the bench, posted a 37-inch vertical jump, ripped off 4.00 and 4.01 times in the pro shuttle, and ran a 4.34 40-yard dash. Out of the 120+ participants, Jordan finished first in every category except the 40, where his 4.34 was the second-best mark at the event.

"All of his numbers are legit, but he's a football player," said coach Thomas. "His thing is he's so damn quick, and he plays so hard. He can run sideline-to-sideline, and when he gets there he's going to lay a hit on you."

"He's so damn quick,
and he plays so hard."

West Montgomery finished 2006 7-6 overall and 4-2 in the 1-A Yadkin Valley Conference. The conference featured several standout players, including Thomasville senior tailback Quan Warley and junior quarterback E.J. Abrams-Ward and Jordan-Matthews junior defensive tackle Anthony Garner. Jordan was right up there with them as he finished runner-up for Player of the Year to Warley while garnering all-conference and all-area honors.

Offensively, he totaled 167 carries for 1,269 yards with 15 touchdowns. Seven of his touchdown runs were longer than 33 yards, and he added two kickoff returns for scores. Defensively, Jordan tallied 115 tackles with 20 tackles for a loss, four sacks, two forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries.

"I really see him playing on the defensive side of the ball on the next level," said coach Thomas. "I think he could play a halfback in the right system, but he is just all over the field on defense."

"[College] coaches like that I don't mind hitting," said Jordan. "I'd like to be inside or outside linebacker if I played defense because I don't like sitting back and watching. I like to attack."

Jordan's recruitment is starting to pick up. He attended NC State's Junior Day and recently visited Auburn on back-to-back weekends courtesy of his family's private jet. What does he think of the Wolfpack?

"A lot of my family members went to State, and my parents donate a lot to State," he said. "My uncle is the head wrestling coach at State. He's proud of me, and he said it's not going to be easy going there just because of the family connections... which of course I understand.

"The facility State has is really nice, and they have a lot of new equipment since they just finished it," Jordan added. "They have some new coaches and they are trying to get situated. They talked a lot about what they are going to do next year and how they are trying to keep the same schedule that they did at Boston College. I'd like to see what O'Brien does."

NC State coaches have yet to offer Jordan a scholarship, as they are hoping to have him at their summer camp. At Junior Day, the Wolfpack coaching staff stressed the importance of attending camp.

"They are telling everybody to come to camp," said Jordan. "They said that if you don't come to camp they are probably not going to look at you as much as they would. They said that around 90% of their offers come from their camp."

Auburn, a power program in the SEC, also caught Jordan's attention.

"I liked it when I went out there," he said. "Auburn was impressive. Obviously their main facility isn't as nice as State's, but their stadium is huge."

An unofficial visit to Florida is on the schedule, and Jordan intends on camping at all three schools and Wake Forest. NC State is recruiting him to play safety, and Auburn is looking at him as a halfback. Currently the Wolfpack and Tigers maintain an advantage.

"It's kind of hard between State and Auburn right now," said Jordan. "With the way Auburn did last year, beating Florida and LSU... I'd like to see what State does next year before I decide."

West Montgomery's Indoor Practice Facility

West Montgomery's New Weightroom

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