After a high school career that saw him have plenty of success, Greencastle High School offensive lineman Jackson Buis is ready to move on to the next level.
On Wednesday, he signed with Saginaw Valley State, continuing a football career that began when his father introduced him to the game.
"My father got me into football at a young age when he got out of college coaching for nine years. He coached at Northwestern, Grand Valley State and Eastern Michigan," Buis told The Putnam County Post.
The 6-foot-3-inch, 290-pound standout said playing offensive line was not, however, something he was too keen about doing when he started playing football.
"No young kid wants to put his hand in the dirt and not be able to run the ball. When I got older and started to enjoy it, I took it very seriously, trying to get better every day. I take great pride in the position. I worked to the best of my ability to get where I am, and I still believe I have more to learn and get better. Last season, I spent a bit of time teaching our middle school program the importance of it, helping them with drills and how to get better. I want the younger groups to have just as much pride that I have in the position," Buis said.
Buis said it felt "amazing" to make his college choice official.
"Saginaw stood out apart from everyone else. They were my first offer and the first offer is the most special one. Secondly, they have such an amazing coaching staff. Coach Brady is an amazing head coach, and I immediately fell in love with the program. They also have incredible facilities along with an amazing school," said Buis, who also had a PWO from Northwestern, an offer from Grand Valley State and had drawn interest from DePauw.
The Tiger Cubs standout said the coaching staff at Saginaw was impressed with the way he played.
"Coach Brady said I play with an edge, which is what he liked most about how I play," he said.
As for getting ready for the next level, Buis admits he is a little concerned.
"I am a little concerned about the jump to the next level. The speed of the game is very different from high school," Buis said.
With his high school career in the rearview, Buris did take a moment to reflect and offer thanks.
"What has stood out the most looking back at my high school career is how I played. I could visibly see my growth over the years, and I feel like I had showed that I worked to the position I'm in now. I could not have gotten to this point without my mom and dad. They are the reason I've become successful. I believe that's because they raised me the right way," Buis said.