It took until day two of the 2014 NHL Entry Draft, but a future member of the Spartan hockey family was finally selected.
Joshua Jacobs was selected by the New Jersey Devils with the 11th pick of the second round, 41st overall, in Philadelphia on Saturday afternoon. The smooth-skating defenseman from Shelby Township, Mich. was the only future Spartan to be selected in the Draft.
Jacobs is the highest Spartan drafted into the show since Daultan Leveille was selected 29th overall by the Atlanta Thrashers in 2008. Jacobs will join RJ Boyd (Florida Panthers), John Draeger (Minnesota Wild), Rhett Holland (Arizona Coyotes), Matt DeBlouw (Calgary Flames) and Mackenzie MacEachern (St. Louis Blues) as the only Spartans on the roster that have been drafted.
In his 56 games with the Indiana Ice of the USHL last year, Jacobs had two goals and 18 assists, with the big stat being the fact that he was plus-36 during the season. If he carries his play over from last season into his first season in the NCAA, he could be a major help on the blue line for the Spartans who struggled on defense in their first season against the Big Ten.
Even though he is a committed Spartan, there is still a possibility that he may never pull over the MSU uniform. The Sarnia Sting of the Ontario Hockey League hold his rights if he were to choose that path instead of the NCAA. The OHL would allow a quicker path to the NHL if Jacobs chooses.
However, that will most likely not be a worry.
“I’m very excited. Indiana was a great place to play, but now I get to finally put on that green and white jersey and Spartan outfit. I’m just so pumped to do it,” Jacobs told NJ.com. “I’ve been waiting for that pretty much my entire life. Growing up that was my dream school to go to as a hockey player and watching David Booth, Duncan Keith, Ryan Miller, Torey Krug.”
Jacobs plans to arrive in East Lansing in August. In the meantime, he is taking online classes at home.
Max Benoit is a multimedia journalist for Impact Sports.
Photo: Jonathan Yales/Impact Sports