Q&A: Football Player Mike Jarrett
On the brink of records, senior from Puyallup is trying to kick his team into the playoffs for his last hoorah
After scoring 12 points in Eastern Washington University’s win last week over Northern Arizona, senior kicker Mike Jarrett has found himself one short boot away from setting school records for career extra points made and attempted. He hopes to get his chance to break the records Saturday (Oct. 15) when Eastern hosts Northern Colorado at 4:05 p.m. Pacific time at Roos Field in Cheney, Wash.
He kicked field goals of 27, 37 and 47 yards in EWU’s 36-28 win over the Lumberjacks, and made all three of his extra point attempts. He has now scored 194 points in his career, moving him into seventh in school history (third among kickers). He has made 119-of-125 extra points, one behind the record for both makes and attempts held by Troy Griggs (120-of-126 from 1999-2001).
Jarrett has now made 25 field goals (fifth in school history) in 40 attempts (sixth) in his career, including 10-of-11 this season. A 2007 graduate of Puyallup (Wash.) High School, Jarrett has made all 14 of his extra point attempts this year.
“Mike Jarrett keeps banging them through – those points he gave us were big,” said Eastern head coach Beau Baldwin following the NAU win.
Jarrett earned Big Sky All-Academic honors in 2009, and went on to make 51 extra points (out of 56 attempts) to rank as the fourth-most in school history. He also made 5-of-10 field goals.
He received All-Academic honors again in 2010 after making 54 extra points (in 55 attempts), which puts him at third in school history. He also made 10-of-19 field goals. He made a game-winning field goal versus Montana in the debut of the red Sprinturf surface at “The Inferno,” a victory which helped catapult the Eagles to the NCAA Division I Championship.
His brother, Bryan, was an All-Big Sky Conference safety for the Eagles in 2005 and 2007 after transferring from Western Washington University.
How do you feel about your place in the ranks for kickers at EWU?
“I feel pretty good; obviously it’s nothing that I kind of shoot for, but it kind of makes me feel good about how I play. I’ve been through lots of different challenges through my career here, so it is something that I can leave behind and that is kind of cool. It’s something special that will maybe be more special down the road, but not right now. So it’s nice I guess.”
What is the one thing you are most worried about during a game?
“Winning the game -- that’s probably the biggest worry of any player on our team. I try not to worry about missing field goals because that kind of thing creeps into your mind and it can kind of get you out of your form a little bit. I try to stay confident and I just don’t really want to worry about what my effect will be on the game. Ultimately, we are just trying to win the game and I’m trying to compete just like any other teammate on the team.”
What role has your brother Bryan played in your life when it comes to football?
“He’s played a big role -- obviously because he played here. My freshman year here was his senior year, so we got to play together on the same team and that was really cool. He was one of the reasons why I came here. I was watching Eastern football games when I was in high school – including the Montana game my junior year. I just right then and there pretty much decided that I wanted to be a part of Eastern Football. I thought I could really have a lot fun here and a lot of success. So I decided to come out and play football, and here we are now.”
What has been your favorite part of going to Eastern so far?
“My favorite part of going to Eastern so far has been traveling with football, definitely. That’s the most fun I have probably ever had -- we have a bunch of funny moments and great times. You get to see places you’ve never been to, and going to the national championship game was sweet. Being a part of that definitely has been the sweetest part about being at Eastern.”
Who is the teammate that would make the best standup comedian?
“I would have to say Bobby Gentry for sure. He is probably one of the smarter guys on the team, so he can come up with some pretty clever stuff.”
If you can do one more thing before graduating from Eastern what would it be?
“I have one big goal, other than trying to make it back to playoffs. I’m studying to get into law school right now, so I’m trying to do that while playing football. I need to get a good score on the LSAT, which kind of gets you into law school -- it’s kind of one of those big gauging tests kind of like the SAT before college. I would like to do well on that.”
What is your favorite movie and why?
“My favorite movie is probably Dumb and Dumber -- it’s hilarious. It’s just one of those movies my brother and I quote from non-stop, and probably will forever.”
What was your most embarrassing moment?
“Ok, so it’s a little story. In English class I have a bunch of my buddies -- probably five of us -- and we had a project to re-enact Hamlet and make a video. We went crazy with it and we had so much fun -- it was hilarious and just over the top. It was nothing you would have anybody else see, just the kids in your class and that’s about it. Well, it turns out at the end of the year they show the best works by seniors and, of course, the Hamlet video pops up in front of the whole school. It was seriously embarrassing -- it was terrible but it was hilarious.”
If you had one song that followed you around everywhere today, what would it be?
“That’s a tough one, but I think ‘We Will Rock You’ by Queen.”