There’s a fit for every player on the All Star Game circuit who learns a new system, competes against other top talent, and quickly gains confidence. During All-Star Bowl practice week, we saw several Notre Dame signers show off their skills as top players in the 2023 recruiting class, with several showing massive improvement throughout the week.
Linebacker Signer Drayk Bowen started the week strong on Tuesday and steadily improved throughout. When you step back now and assess, there’s a legitimate argument that Bowen was the best overall linebacker on either team.
From start to finish, he represented the future of Notre Dame football at a high level. Bowen had a lot to prove, and he did just that.
“Day one was all about getting to grips with everything, the size of the offensive line,” Bowen explained. “It’s very different from high school, so you just have to adapt to it. I felt like I could compete with everyone here, but I just felt like I had to prove it.
“Throughout the week, I feel like I got better with the run fits, being able to play against a bigger offensive line and get past them and figure out what’s not working,” Bowen continued. “I feel like my progress throughout the week has been good.”
After alternating between MIKE and linebacker WILL earlier in the week, Bowen took on a leadership role in the middle of the West defense. He quickly became one of the team’s main communicators, which Bowen is extremely proud of.
“It was a pretty easy adjustment,” Bowen explained. “I did that a bit in high school, primary communicator with the offensive line, defensive backs and some offense as well. It’s been a pretty easy adjustment, obviously new teammates, but it’s been great.
Before Friday’s final West practice, Bowen was greeted with another big honor. He was named Indiana State’s Gatorade Player of the Year, which Bowen did in two straight years.
Later that night, Bowen was also named All-American Bowl Defensive Player of the Year at their banquet. You won’t find a more decorated player than Bowen, who cleaned up the gear this offseason. This latest Gatorade honor was another special for the Indiana star.
“It’s super special,” he said. “Not many people have done it in consecutive years. It’s something I’m grateful for and super excited to have won.
Later in the week, wide receiver Rico Flores Jr. and offensive tackle Charles Jagusah joined the talented Irish signings at San Antonio after not being able to compete this week due to injury. This group of seven men had a great opportunity to spend time together this week, something they will be able to do a lot more of in a few weeks when Bowen officially enlists.
“It’s been super exciting,” he said. “We all get to hang out and stuff, so it’s been a pretty fun week with them, playing video games, hanging out and riding around town. It was great.
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If there were any questions about how Bowen would stack up heading into the week, they were completely erased. From start to finish he showed what makes him so special as a player, a person and a competitor.
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Content of the Irish distribution
Scholarship Table 2023
Soccer Calendar 2023
Notre Dame Scholarship Offers 2023
Notre Dame Scholarship Offers 2024
Recruiting Class of 2023 Grades – Offense
Recruitment Class of 2023 Ranks – Defense
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