The Military Bowl Foundation and DC Touchdown Club are partnering with WTOP during the 2020-2021 high school football season to honor a Player of the Week. Read about this week’s Player of the Week below.
The Stone Bridge High School football team has a rich history. Since the Ashburn school opened at the turn of the century, the Bulldogs have played in nine previous state championship games. Five alumni have gone on to play in the NFL.
And while the standards are high for one of the most consistent teams in the D.C. area, Coach Mikey Thompson said that Jacob Thomas is one of the best ever to put on a Stone Bridge uniform.
The junior added to his resume last Saturday, intercepting two passes and returning both for touchdowns — one for 80 yards and the other for 54 yards — as the Bulldogs beat William Fleming of Roanoke, 46-13, in a Virginia 5A semifinal game.
For his efforts, Thomas was named the Military Bowl DC Touchdown Club High School Football Player of the Week.
“He’s the best all-around player I’ve ever had,” said Stone Bridge Coach Mickey Thompson, the school’s only football coach since it opened in 2000.
“He’s a great quarterback too. He’ll be our quarterback next year. He can play anything.”
For now, Thomas starts at free safety, returns punts (the Bulldogs’ defense forces a lot of those) and gets in at wide receiver on offense when he can. Stone Bridge has throttled most of its opponents, limiting Thomas’ ability to play on offense as Thompson balances preparing his players to play a full game against concerns about running up the score.
Stone Bridge (8-0) has outscored opponents 445 to 89 this season; this past weekend’s 33-point win was actually the Bulldogs’ second-closest game this spring.
This season, Thomas has intercepted six passes — returning four for touchdowns. Of his 11 punt returns, four have gone for touchdowns, and he averages 34.7 yards per punt return.
On Thomas’ first interception against William Fleming, he came down with the ball at his own 20-yard line and was immediately wrapped up by an opponent.
“He was going to pitch it,” Thompson said. But Thomas broke free, and then wove his way through traffic. On the second interception return, five opponents had a chance to tackle him, but Thomas made each one miss, outracing everyone to the corner of the end zone.
Now, Thomas is chasing his second state championship in two months. In February, as a guard on the Stone Bridge boys’ basketball team, he scored a team-high 28 points in the Virginia 5A championship game, as the Bulldogs claimed their first-ever state championship in that sport.
“He’s got that gift where he can make plays on his own,” Thompson said. “He can make something out of nothing. Anytime he touches the ball and has any space, he’s a threat. At 6 feet and 190 pounds, he’s pretty shifty and strong enough to run through somebody.”
One other player receiving Player of the Week consideration was South County wide receiver Brock Spalding, who caught two touchdown passes, including the game-winning 16-yarder with less than two minutes remaining as the Stallions rallied to beat James Madison, 29-22, in a Virginia 6A semifinal.