Freshman-to-be Brandon Bourbon is eager to get to Lawrence and get to work. But, the RB from Potosi, MO, hasn't been sitting around just thinking about it, he's been hard at work in the weight room and has added more muscle to go along with his explosiveness. An update, inside.
One tends to forget sometimes that incoming freshman athletes are still
While most graduating seniors will kick back, relax and maybe work a
part-time job until college life officially begins in August, the
timeline for future Division One athletes is, well, somewhat more
Take Brandon Bourbon, for instance. One of the top running back
prospects in the Midwest, Bourbon hails from Potosi, Mo., where his
exploits on the gridiron were well known throughout the region. His
abilities earned him scholarship offers from Kansas, Notre Dame,
Stanford, Missouri and BYU – among others – though he ultimate chose to
sign with Turner Gill and the Jayhawks in February.
Now, just a handful of months after National Signing Day, Bourbon is
only weeks away from leaving home, living on his own, and beginning
life as a student athlete at the University of Kansas.
“It's crazy,” Bourbon said, of how rapidly the change is approaching.
“Not only that, from an athletic standpoint, but from a school
standpoint. I'm going to be away from home in an environment like that
and living by myself. But I'm looking forward to it.”
On Saturday, Bourbon joined a number of his future teammates – fellow
signees in the Class of 2010 – as well as a host of recruits for
Kansas' annual Spring Game. With his mom, dad and high school
quarterback in tow, it was the heralded running back's first chance to
visit campus since his official visit in January.
And honestly, Bourbon said, nothing felt much different. The coaches
all still showed him a great deal of love, and he was excited to spend
some time with the team and future roommate, Kansas City (MO) Rockhurst
High School cornerback Dexter McDonald.
“It was cool,” he said. “I got to meet a lot of guys that were signed
and were going to come up with me this next summer and fall.”
As for the Spring Game itself, Bourbon liked what he saw from the
revamped Kansas offense. Much like his high school team, he said, the
Jayhawks ran a mixture of formations with the quarterback both shotgun
and under center.
Bourbon is approaching the summer as if he is battling for a starting
spot in the Jayhawk backfield, and toward that goal has spent the past
few months virtually living in the weight room. Through a combination
of weight training and plyometrics, he's managed to maintain his
elite-level speed and agility while adding an additional 10 pounds of
muscle to his frame – pushing his weight to 218 pounds.
In just a few short weeks, Bourbon will be officially begin his career
as a student-athlete at the University of Kansas. Lawrence will become
his home away from home, and the football team his surrogate family.
That's when the real work will begin, both on and off the field. And he
can hardly wait.
“I'm just excited,” Bourbon said. “I know I made the right decision.”