By Justin Sokeland
BEDFORD – Drew Shoufler made great catches during his football career at Bedford North Lawrence. Now Hanover College has snagged a prize catch, adding one of the state’s top receivers to its 2019 recruiting class.
Shoulfer, named Class 5A senior All-State by the Indiana Football Coaches Association, committed to play college football at Hanover, an NCAA Div. III program, on Tuesday night.
Shoufler compiled impressive statistics for the Stars, totaling 55 receptions for 1,188 yards and 16 touchdowns as BNL went 8-3. Now he will be joining a program that went 7-4 and qualified for the national playoffs under four-year head coach Matthew Theobald.
“It’s where I felt most comfortable,” Shoufler said. “It’s where I think I can better myself on the field and off the field. They talked with me about playing outside receiver, where there’s more one-on-one, jump balls, which is what I like to do. It fits.”
Shoulfer, who plans to major in computer science, is following a family tradition as his older siblings also played college sports.
“I never felt that pressure,” he said. “I’m not trying to live up to their name. I’m just trying to play sports and have fun with it, enjoy it while I can. I went to my bother’s games at Franklin, and it was an atmosphere I never forgot.”
BNL coach Steve Weber, a Hanover alum, believes Shoufler made a perfect choice.
“Not only is he going to a great school, but the program has been winning,” Weber said. “They’ve been very good over the years and they’re doing well now. He will get a great experience.
“They got a great athlete. I think he can contribute quickly. He’s got size, and he can jump. He can go after the ball and he has good speed. He also put time into route running, he has a good understanding, And he can block. He’s used to it and can hold them for a long time. That will go a long way toward helping him.”
Shoulfer has been a three-sport star (including basketball and track) at BNL, but football has always been his passion.
“It’s the lessons it teaches you,” Shoufler said. “The stuff you get from football, you don’t get from anything else.”
Hanover, a member of the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference, will start the 2019 season at home against Centre on Sept. 7.