Jenny Barr's college soccer career at Miami (Ohio) is still a year and a half from beginning, but the St. Charles North junior's recent college choice already has earned her extra brownie points around the house.
Barr's older siblings, sister KK and brother Quint, each considered their father's alma mater before deciding on other schools. Jenny, though, will follow in Jim Barr's footsteps by attending college in Oxford, Ohio.
"He was very excited," Barr said. "He'd have been excited wherever I went, but it just made it that much more special now that we have a college that we share. He's been so excited. He's been running around putting Miami of Ohio stickers on the car."
Jim Barr, who did not compete athletically at the Mid-American Conference school, remains involved with Miami's business school, Jenny Barr said.
Jenny Barr will be a freshman at Miami when KK Barr is a senior at Northwestern, where she is on the Wildcats' soccer team. Jenny Barr watched a Miami-Northwestern soccer clash this season and is hopeful the matchup remains on the schools' schedules.
Jenny Barr earned rave reviews for her defensive play during North's run to the 3A state championship match last season despite little background playing in the back. She feels better prepared to develop into the attack-minded defender she envisions becoming for the RedHawks after acclimating more to defense in recent months with the Strikers club program.
"Every game and every practice I'm looking at the field from a defensive standpoint instead of being so [focused on offense]," Barr said. "I think that really helped me. Practice makes perfect."
The North Stars were denied what would have been the school's first state championship in a quadruple overtime loss to Naperville North. Barr said she and the team's other returnees are eager to build on last year's postseason success when the spring rolls around.
"I think we're still upset about the loss," Barr said. "It was a tough one."