2022 Penn State Commit Drew Shelton ready to take over at Downingtown West
Downingtown West has their new star. With the loss of star Quarterback Will Howard who is now at Kansas State along with other key seniors, the question is who will be the next leader for the Whippets? They might have found their answer sooner than expected in Penn State commit Drew Shelton. At a dominant 6’5 and 275lbs, this 4-Star Junior already has made his college choice. Shelton will only continue to grow and get stronger ahead of its 2020 season. As of right now, the Whippets season will begin late in October due to COVID-19 and if that date doesn’t change, Shelton is ready to go.
The choice to commit was somewhat a shocking decision so early on for someone in the 2022 recruiting class. Shelton commanded offers from the likes of Michigan, Oklahoma, Oregon, and several others. Despite all of that outside noise, Drew knew deep down that he didn’t want to go far.
“My relationships with the staff led the way. But also it will be special to win a national championship for my home state and I also loved the campus… I didn’t feel the need to wait it out. I felt so comfortable with the whole offensive staff and campus it was almost like a no brainer once you add in the fact that it’s the home state school”
Shelton is a multi-sport athlete, as he also plays basketball for the school and has found his role underneath the basket as a big for West. This position has helped him out a lot with his football technique and it has been a huge beneficiary for him on the field,
“Basketball helps a lot. Being a post player in basketball is all about footwork and if your feet aren’t good you won’t score”
There have been a lot of changes from the 2019 season for Shelton in a wide amount of aspects. Since the season he has grown about another inch and also put on 30 lbs to help further build his frame. In 2019 Shelton was a Sophomore on a team that made an incredibly deep playoff run, going to the 6A State Semifinals. There were several key Senior leaders on that team, among them being Quarterback Will Howard. These vets all helped mold Drew for when he will begin to step into a leadership role this season.
“We had a lot of very good seniors last year that taught us a bunch of things. Will specifically taught me a lot about the leadership role and how to be the big man on campus. He was a great kid and ball player but an even better leader and teacher.”
His youth and lack of size compared to now also helped him in the mechanic of the line rather than having the ability to rely on pure strength. When looking at pass protection and run blocking, Shelton definitely leans towards the latter,
“I feel as if I’m better in the run game. I was undersized last season so I had to find other ways to win on the line of scrimmage which I believe will help me in the long run.”
While he has shown to be dominant on that end and has a lot of hype going into these next few seasons, Drew does feel that there is room for improvement on certain aspects of his game and he will never be satisfied,
“Pass protection. Last year I used a lot of my athleticism just to get in front of people in the passing game but this year I have really worked and critiqued my technique so I can be better in the pass game.”
The Athleticism mentioned above has been huge for Drew in the trenches, but in the open field, it has allowed him to be a very key downfield blocker for his running backs.
“I like pulling and getting into space. I think I move well and have good feet which helps while out in space.”
Looking at the NFL, there are some guys that Drew looks up to and sometimes sees his playstyle in or steal pieces of their game. New York Jets rookie Mekhi Becton is the one guy that Shelton admires the most,
“Becton is a big tackle that is very agile and moves well I think I’m the same way and the goal is one day to be standing in the same place he is in the league.”
While the season is expected to start in over a month, it is unsure if kids across Pennsylvania will be able to play this season. But if Downingtown is able to play this season, Drew Shelton will be ready.
“We aren’t sure what our season is looking like right now but eventually when we do play, I will be a leader on and off the field as well as a guy the opposing d-line doesn’t want to line up against.”
Mandatory Credit: Drew Shelton Hudl