Kutschke brother give Scouts 1-2 punch on ‘D’
Buffalo Grove quarterback Brian Brichetto (center) is sacked by Trent Williams (right) and Thomas Kutschke of Lake Forest. | Joel Lerner~Sun-Times Media
LAKE FOREST — Separated by just 14 months, brothers Tom and Jack Kutschke are as similar as one would expect. But as close as they are in age and interests, each is unique as well.
Firstly, they both like football. Tom, a senior, is Lake Forest’s gap-stuffing defensive lineman. At 6-foot-5 and 240 pounds, he creates chaos at the line of scrimmage.
Jack, a tad smaller at 6-4, 225-pounds, is the Scouts’ weakside linebacker. A speedier Kutschke, Jack is a playmaker in space, asked to run down opposing skill players.
“Tom’s job is to line up, get his gap and take control of it — and take care of the guy in front of him. Jack’s role is to get people lined up and aligned properly and worry about coverage,” Lake Forest head coach/defensive coordinator Chuck Spagnoli said. “They are similar, but (at the same time) they are not at all similar.”
Since they first took up football, when Tom was 10, the brothers have played for the same team almost every year. The exception came when Tom was a freshman at Lake Forest and Jack was an eighth-grader at St. Mary’s Middle School. While Jack always has played defense, Tom was a quarterback until eighth grade, when his coach and father, Ed, moved him to defense.
Similar — yet different.
Having their dad — who happens to be 6-3 — as coach gave the siblings a common thread, a dinner-time topic around their shared interest of football.
“It was great having him there, and watching over me and over (Jack) and correcting me,” Tom Kutschke said. “It was great for the family. We always had something to talk about. Everybody had a story.”
Added Jack Kutschke: “We can relate and talk about the game. It makes us better players. You can talk about things you can’t talk about with other people. It helps you to be a better teammate.”
Interests outside of football are also aligned — Tom likes to fish and ski, as does Jack. But they also differ in that Tom plays hockey, and Jack’s a baseball man. Both like the same classes, with one exception: cooking. Yes, the more gregarious Jack is a also a man of the kitchen. Having taken classes in the culinary arts, Jack can crack an egg with the best of ’em.
“I like to cook breakfast on the weekends,” he said. “Egg sandwiches, hash browns — a little fruit.”
Added brother Tom: “He loves to cook, and I don’t know how. I know how to microwave. He’s an omelet specialist.”
Does Tom eat what Jack serves?
“He’s not a big fan of eggs. He’s very picky — they have to be cooked a certain way with the right amount of cheese,” Jack said. “Otherwise, he’ll eat anything. He eats the leftovers.”
That’s what happens when you’re the youngest: big brother always gets the leftovers.