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Football Alumni Playing Professionally

By Milan Flagler, Staff Writer

Jake Bofshever, Broward County native and former wide receiver to the LIU Sharks has made his name in LIU ranks. On Oct 24, Bofshever was signed as a wide receiver to the Jousters of the Spring League.  The Spring league is a professional football league that houses many former NFL players, and players eventually looking to reach the NFL.  

Bofshever is a talented athlete who crafted his athletic ability to garner the recognition from coaches, teammates, and professional football opportunities.  

​Head Football Coach and Defensive Coordinator Bryan Collins has worked with Bofshever through his college career and has witnessed his dedication to his athletic development firsthand. 

“He came to New York as a quarterback, then stayed in that position for a while.  Bofshever waited, worked, and worked, and perfected his abilities, but along that journey to doing so, he showed us his full talent,” he said. “What he wanted to be was a wide receiver.  He worked towards it and got it. 

He’s always been courageous, a great teammate, and always worked harder year after year to make his way up the ladder.  Bofshever deserves it, he worked hard, stuck through it, and preserved to the end.”

​As the head coach, Collins has directly overseen Bofshever’s growth in his athletic ability during his time on the LIU Sharks.  Bofshever carefully watched his leaders closely so he could do what they did to make him successful. The process of preparing himself to become a leader wasn’t easy.

The chances to showcase his ability became slim, but just as Collins said, Bofshever preserved.  “Jake’s position came with very strong leadership roles.  You have to condition yourself to be a leader.  He fit in naturally as a leader for the team. 

He took a backseat to the earlier leaders and watched what they did to garner the same amount of success, or more,” Collins said.  He did exactly that and opened himself a door of opportunity for more scholarship money and playing time.

 He followed the process.  He was a program kid, kids that come in and develop that force to push through and stay on the field.”

​The athletic development that Bofshever gained has launched him into the sites of professional playing opportunities. 

The desire to play football and the brotherhood of his teammates fueled his inhibitions to go to the top.  Coach Collins believes that Bofshever’s extra attention in the off-season and still engaging in his sports activities helped him earn his top spot.  “Jake attended pro games, workouts, and is playing in the spring league.

He is still chasing his dream even during the pandemic”, he said.  “Still working out, still going to practice, staying on his regimen.  He worked hard; he knew he could make it.”  

Due to his work in college, a bright future is in the stars ahead for Jake Bofshever.  Whether on or off the field, Jake will definitely work in football.

​“I can see Jake having a lifetime involvement in sports.  He has a great personality, he’s talented, and works hard. If he wanted, he would be an amazing sports agent if he doesn’t want to take football professionally,” Collins said.  “He can open plenty of doors for himself, he’s a fun guy, has a great personality, and is a great athlete.”  The road to growth wasn’t an easy one in Bofshever’s case. Football is a quick-thinking high-collision sport. Injuries aren’t foreign to the sport of football.  Many great players receive injuries and take games or even seasons off.

​“Injuries are all part of the game, but that’s where your personal skill and the chemistry you have with your teammates help you prevail.  You have to be aware of every side of you on the field,” Bofshever said.  I know my teammates will do the best they can for me when it’s time for them to.  But when it comes down to me catching a ball and going for a touchdown, I’ve got to think fast and play smart before I make a wrong move.”

Bofshever’s passion for football will never waiver, as it continues to be one of his favorite activities throughout his college life.  

​“I’ve always loved football. It’s literally my favorite thing to do.  When I was a child, my father and I used to play catch with my football and watch the game a lot.  I think that’s what got me into the game. Since then, I’ve been on school teams, summer leagues, park teams, you name it. Wherever there was a chance to play football, I was there. I did whatever I could to make sure I stayed on the field. It was my dream to be quarterback in high school, and I got that. After high school and with all the progress I made, I felt like there was more I could do, more to play. Here at LIU I went to workouts, participated in off-season workouts, found summer leagues and I can’t emphasize enough on the number of workouts I’ve attended,” Bofshever said

​Growth in athletic ability is nothing foreign to Bofshever. His latest feat of wide receiver was a testament to his growth.  Bofshever had to take a step back to watch and learn again.  He had to continue to hone his abilities to incorporate his new position.

​“Becoming a wide receiver was almost like a stepping stone for me. I feel like it’s the first time I was able to see the progress of my work. Seeing how I transitioned from quarterback to wide receiver was amazing to me.  All I’ve known was quarterback and thinking it’s the top place of leadership,” he said. 

“Being a wide receiver showed me the importance of teamwork and the split leadership roles. Of course, the physical work was strenuous, but the mental work is exhilarating, looking back on catches is the best, and there’s no other feeling like scoring a touchdown.”  

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