Jared and Jamie Devries
Iowa City, IA
“It was a dream come true,” says defensive end Jared Devries (1998 B.A.) of the Detroit Lions about playing football for the Iowa Hawkeyes. “You grow up watching and listening to the Hawks, so to have the opportunity presented to you to play for them is like living your childhood dream.”
That chance to play for Head Coach Hayden Fry came in the form of an athletic scholarship that he earned playing at Aplington-Parkersburg (Iowa) High School for his coach and good friend Ed Thomas. Now Jared and his wife, Jamie, want to make sure that future UI student-athletes are able to pursue their own educational and athletic dreams. They’ve established the DeVries Family Athletic Scholarship with a generous gift commitment to The University of Iowa Foundation.
“One thing that Jamie and I feel is very important is to give back to the University that provided such an opportunity for us,” Jared, who graduated with a degree in communications, explains. “The Hawkeyes are a big circle, a big family. I’ve been very blessed and fortunate, and to be able to provide those opportunities to young men and women is a great joy for us.”
Jared, of Birmingham, Michigan, is also eager to introduce Hawkeye pride to his sons Jaylen, 9, and Easton, 6. “We’re proud season-ticket holders at Kinnick Stadium,” he says. “We get back as often as we can. The boys just love it.”
Jared holds UI career records for sacks (43) and tackles-for-loss (79), was named first team All-Big Ten for three straight seasons, and was selected as a second team All-American as a junior by Football News. He continues to succeed in the NFL and says that whenever he plays against a former Hawkeye on Sundays, they always make a point of saying hello and catching up.
“Once a Hawk, always a Hawk,” he points out. “It’s a common bond, even if I didn’t play with them at Iowa. No one can ever take the black and gold out of you.”
Thanks to Jared, Jamie, and the Devries Family Athletic Scholarship, generations of other kids will also grow up to see their Hawkeye dreams come true—dreams that will stick with them for life.