Prototypcial length is something the University at Buffalo has not had quite enough of on the defensive line.
The Bulls are getting it in Williamsville South High School start Jake Fuzak, a 6-foot-5, 280-pound defensive lineman.
Fuzak, who hails from the school that brought UB star quarterback Joe Licata, was first-team All-Western New York as an offensive lineman this year and won the Trench Trophy as the Western New York’s top lineman.
“I think his biggest attribute as a player is he runs so well,” said Williamsville South coach Kraig Kurzanski. “He’s a 5-flat 40 guy when he was timed last summer, and he just chased people down for us. That’s a unique thing for an inside defensive lineman.”
Look for UB to try Fuzak first as a 3-technique defensive tackle, “the Warren Sapp position,” playing over the outside shoulder of a guard.
“He looks like a Division I football player,” Kurzanski said. “He’s a big, long kid. I don’t know if I’d say he’s a skinny 275 pounds, but he has room on his frame to grow. I think he can play at 300 pounds. He’s a pretty good athlete at 300 pounds.”
Fuzak picked UB after his junior season over Connecticut and Old Dominion. He drew interest from Northwestern and UCLA came to see him, as well. He was the ninth-ranked prospect in the state by NationalUnderclassmen.com. He finished his senior season with 68 total tackles, 13 tackles for loss and 8.5 sacks. He had an interception return for a TD in his last game, against Lancaster.
He also has the athleticism to excel in ice hockey. He’s a left wing for the Billies hockey team.
Fuzak played for the 18-and-under USA Football team against a team of Canadian all-stars in the 2015 International Bowl at AT&T Stadium in Irving, Texas.
“USA Football ran a regional camp in Chicago in the summer of 2014, and Jake and was one of the top 10 players at the regional camp,” Kurzanski said. “From there he went to Baltimore for the national camp and he made the top 40, and he was named the captain of the team for the game at AT&T Stadium. There were some big-time players in that game, guys going to the SEC, and it gave Jake some notoriety. Being named captain for the game, the coach picked the captains, was even a bigger honor.”