March 28, 2013

Ten Questions with Jake Rinow

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Katie Schubauer caught up with junior defender Jake Rinow to discuss everything from his road rage and his questionable resemblance to Bradley Cooper, to his love of Game of Thrones.

1. Jake, you are a junior captain on the soccer team. What has Cornell soccer meant to you over the course of your college career?

It’s pretty much been my life here. Soccer is the reason I’m here. Pretty much the only people I hang out with are the soccer team. I was originally committed to Syracuse for soccer. Switching to Cornell was kind of a gamble. I didn’t know if I could handle the academics, but being here playing with the team is an unforgettable experience and the best decision of my life.

Who is your favorite teammate?

Ben Williams. We live on the third floor together. I roomed with Stephen Reisert freshman year and we were really close, but the past two years I’ve lived with Ben Williams. He’s another captain with me. We pretty much do everything together. He’s a good guy.

Speaking of the third floor, how do you find ways to entertain yourself on the third floor? Apparently the rest of your house finds it a mystery.

Games. Ben and I make up games. So for instance, I have this blow up beach ball and the first game we made up was we would just hit it around. We’re both crazy competitors so we make it really intense hitting it back and forth and making up rules, and then it developed into a little basketball game with a hoop that I got from my girlfriend’s little sister. That’s what we do. We just take a basic game and make up rules to make it really interesting. And put-put. I attached a hammer to a metal pole to make a club for put-put. We also watch an incredible amount of TV shows. No Cornell student should watch that much TV.

2. Do you think that you look like Bradley Cooper?

Ben does. I don’t. But he says when I trim my beard, I look like Bradley Cooper. I would love to look like him so I hope I do.

3. Tell us about “Push Yourself.”

Push Yourself is a company started by my soccer coach when I was a junior in high school. It’s actually what I wrote my admissions essay about to get into Cornell. It’s about hitting four different pillars: physically, intellectually, socially, and environmentally. It’s basically pushing yourself to be better and trying to make other people better. I believe in every aspect of it. I push myself physically to try to be the best athlete I can be; intellectually at Cornell; environmentally, if I see garbage I’ll pick it up. It’s kind of cheesy but I love it. I sold shirts of it in high school and I sell them here. I love it. It’s a way of life.

4. Tell us about your “alien shoulder.”

I tore my AC joint, acromioclavacular in high school snowboarding. I face planted. I was going down the hill and two people that were inexperienced skiers, let’s say, were on either side of me and I didn’t see them and had to carve out of the way and I fell and separated my shoulder. I could get it fixed, but it would be purely cosmetic. There’s really no pain. If I lay on it too long I have to switch but no big deal. It’s funny though because people freak out. If someone just realizes it, I act like I don’t know what it is and they totally freak out.

Why don’t you feel pain?

Because I’m from Buffalo.

That’s it?

Yeah, I think that’s a pretty good answer.

5. Apparently you are known for some pretty serious road rage. Is that true?

The one thing I hate about Cornell is that people don’t know how to cross the street. If I’m driving and they’re trying to walk when I clearly have the right of way — I know pedestrians have the right of way, but if I’m cruising and you’re trying to get in my way — you’re going to get an earful.

I have also heard you have a tendency to display the same aggression on the field by ‘bulldozing’ into your opponents and flipping them over. Please share your most recent memory.

OK. I would say there are two. Freshman year against Yale, I came in at half time and dribbled the ball too far ahead of me and the Yale player came up to try to get the ball from me. But I was going a lot faster and I was probably a lot stronger. And I hit him so hard that he went up three feet in the air horizontally and fell on the ground and didn’t get up. That was amazing. It felt awesome. The second was this year at Harvard; I was going on one of my normal runs up the left side, bulldozing two people and again the ball was too far in front of me and this kid was a little bit closer to it. But I wasn’t going to stop so I lowered my shoulder into his chest/throat area and he didn’t get off the ground. He laid flat on his back for a while.

6. Why do you wear tie-dye women’s sliding shorts?

It reflects my individuality perfectly.

7. Tell me about your goals celebration at the 2011 Hartwick game.

(Laughing) So first goal of college, super excited, didn’t really know what to do, never really thought about a goal celebration. So I sprinted away from the entire team and attempted to do a round-off back flip, which I can do all of the time. It’s my move. But the ground was really slick and I was going way too fast. And I ended up landing on my feet, but my neck was like in the dirt and I had grass on my eye. But I didn’t feel the pain because I was so pumped up about my goal.

And because you’re from Buffalo.

Yes, and because I’m from Buffalo.

8. I hear you like the TV show Game of Thrones. Is that true?

I am an excessive Game of Thrones reader. I heard about it when it first came out and watched it. Then when second season ended, I didn’t want to wait for the third season to come out, so I started reading the books. And now I have it on my phone, I have it on my kindle, I have it on my computer, I have it everywhere.

Which character would you be from Game of Thrones and why?

That’s a really good question. But I definitely know the answer. I would be Jon Snow. The reason I would be Jon Snow is because he has a wolf and that’s badass. Really cool. Sweet fighter. He has to work for everything he gets. He wasn’t given anything. He keeps his honor, which is huge. And he’s a cool looking guy.

Why do you like the shows Twilight and Glee?

Because it’s important to have a sentimental side in life.

9. How did you get the nickname ‘Rinow Rocket?’

That’s a nickname [junior teammate] Aaorn Oder gave me. I play left back, so a lot of times we cleared the ball into the channel up the field and I can kick the ball real hard so Aaron always used to call it the Rinow Rocket.

10. Which other Cornell team do you like to hang out with the most?

I mean, I mostly just hang out with the soccer team, but I guess the team I hang out with the most would be the track team. But primarily Cornell soccer.

Original Author: Katie Schubauer