Charlotte, NC - Johnson C Smith senior Austin Jacques is one of the top linebackers in the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association. He's won numerous conference awards, and is a team captain for the Golden Bulls, but he's out to show he's a lot more than just a jock.
For a couple hours each day, Jacques can escape the pressures of football and school, and get lost in his music. He started playing the piano five and a half years ago and quickly fell in love.
"That's something that's always made the gears start ticking, is music," said Jacques.
In 2013, he and a friend, Marcus Neither, started a production company, Signature, LLC. They currently have 3 songs on iTunes. Jacques believes music will always be a big part of his life but when he graduates, his first plan is to pursue a professional career in football.
"After the season I immediately start training, to get my times right for the combine," he said.
Jacques plays linebacker for the Johnson C Smith football team. He leads the team in tackles.
"He's our team leader," said Golden Bulls head coach Kermit Blount. "He does so many positive things for this football team."
It's not unheard of for a linebacker from a division II program at a historically black college to make it to the NFL. It is however, rare, but so is Austin. He's a fierce linebacker with a soft spot for the piano.
"Every time I put on my helmet, I become the man inside the helmet," said Jacques. "You have to be different, ruthless, just passionate about the game. Then when I'm doing my music, everything can be on my mind but everything that's on my mind, or how I'm feeling at the time, that's what comes out."