Whear excited for opportunity at JMU

Published 9:19 pm Monday, August 5, 2019

You never forget your first love, so two-sport Warrior standout Aaron Whear is sticking with football at the next level.

After an illustrious wrestling career and a standout football career for Nansemond River High School, Whear will head to James Madison University to play football. While going through his options, he had opportunities to wrestle in college as well but felt like football was something he didn’t want to give up on.

After getting multiple offers as a preferred walk-on as a long-snapper at different NCAA Division I schools, Whear decided on JMU. After reaching out to the JMU coaches who had recruited him at the previous school they were at, he decided that the fit was going to be best for him.

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“I knew JMU was where I wanted to be,” Whear said. “Now I’m just focused on getting bigger, better, stronger, faster, and just working my way up the depth chart.”

Whear will redshirt his first season. He will take the year to get acclimated to the college life and take advantage of a Division I workout program. Whear was a long-snapper at Nansemond River and played tight end. During his junior season for the Warriors, playing college football was something he saw himself having an opportunity to do.

“I realized that snapping was my opportunity to play college football, and I started giving it the attention it deserved,” Whear said. “The finer points of throwing the ball between your legs for 15 yards often gets overlooked, because snapping isn’t one of the sexier positions. But it’s one job that must be executed perfectly every single time.”

He has a goal of putting on 20 pounds during the course of his redshirt year and to mentally and physically prepare himself for the college game, which will allow him to protect better on field goals. At the college level, every special team snap is important, especially at the NCAA Division I level. Whear feels like he’ll be ready for the task.

Whear finished his senior year at Nansemond River as an All-District tight end. During his junior year, he helped the Warriors in their run to the state tournament. He was also a state champion for the wrestling team and is the reigning Suffolk News-Herald Winter Male Player of the Year.