When Jacob Campsey – the sixth child and youngest son of Butch and Sherry Campsey – went to MHB, it was with the intention of playing baseball. However, he changed his focus to concentrate on his studies and to prepare to become a football coach. Jacob explains that from the time he knew anything about football, he wanted to coach it.
Graduating from DHS in 2006, Jacob had experienced playing on a “really good team that won lots of games.” So, it was natural that the love of football was born in those successful school years. But, he also fell in love with the benefits that coaching a team of young men could provide. Jacob recalls the tremendous impact coaches Dean Bates and Chad Quisenberry had on him and how they “shaped me early in life.” He saw that his coaches cared for the boys like a father does. “It was more than football. People were important to them, and I wanted to be able to help young men the way my coaches had done.”
For the five years that Jacob was at MHB, he worked on campus, did landscaping on the side, and met his future wife, Jenah – whom he actually met during his first week on campus! And right out of college, the two married.
Upon completing his degree in 2011, Jacob got a job at Thrall High School. His duties there included defensive football coordinator, assistant basketball, head power lifting coach, and junior high track coach. He spent three years there where “everyone did it all.” Then, in the spring of his third year at Thrall, Jacob had an opportunity to move to Rockdale High School, which was a bigger school. And the fact that Rockdale had just come off a really incredible season made this move “a good step up as far as football goes,” he says.
So, Jacob, Jenah, and their dogs moved to Rockdale with Jenah teaching elementary education and Jacob becoming an assistant coach and teacher in the special education department. Now, Jacob is going into his fifth year there and is in his fourth year as defensive coordinator. It has been an incredible ride, as, last year, Rockdale won State 3A Division 1 Football Championship, and when asked about that feat, Jacob had this to say:
“The dream of a state championship was something we always talked about and worked for in my playing days in Devine. I’ve always known how hard it would be to attain the goal of playing for, much less winning, a state championship. Few people in this profession are fortunate enough to have had a chance to make it to the big game; so, I feel unbelievably blessed to not only have made it to one but to have won it!
“When I reflect back on the run we had, we made too many special memories to count. We had such a special group of young men that played so hard for one another and for this community. When you look at an accomplishment that a group of young men achieve like that, what makes me swell up and gives me the most pride is thinking about the kinds of husbands, fathers, and employees they are going to be. That the lessons they learned that season are a big part of that – battling all sorts of unnamed adversity, trusting each other and their coaching, never quitting when it would have been easy to do so. All of those things are qualities of people who are successful in life!”
With that noteworthy accomplishment, Jacob adds that most recently, he and Jenah have taken another worthwhile step. They decided to adopt. The first step along that path was to get certified to foster-adopt. They got their license in October of 2017. Finally, their first placement happened just this past April when they received two half siblings, a two-year-old girl and one-year old boy. They are hoping to complete their adoption next February. Jacob says “It’s been the best thing in our lives we’ve ever done. It has also been a whirlwind, but so rewarding.” He loves that he and Jenah will have the opportunity to change the future of two children whose lives will be forever impacted. He says that “they were in pretty rough shape,” but he adds, “they’ve come so far.”
Jacob acknowledges that, because coaching is such a demanding job, and this being his first football season with children of his own, his excitement and his anxiety levels are both high. But, he’s excited about having his children at the field house with him and to having the players interact with them. Also, there is a day care at the school provided for staff members, and when school starts up again, Jenah’s second-grade classroom will be just two hallways down from their children.
As far as any downtime activities, Jacob says that he and Jenah stay close to home and involved with the community. They try to go to as many sporting events as possible as a family, and they attend every basketball and baseball game. That is in addition to the strength-and-condition camp Jacob keeps open for the community kids.
Jacob says that he and Jenah have tried to make a life out of investing in people, more specifically, in kids – whether it’s their own they’re adopting or students and athletes. Jacob says his purpose, his “why”, is to provide a mentorship and leadership to children which they might not otherwise receive. Looking back, he realizes that although he had a really good upbringing, there were a lot of kids that did not and didn’t get much attention at home. So, he feels that he is “investing in them, in their future, and in the future of this community and world which has also been far more important to me than trying to make a bunch of money.”