Senior Spotlight: Drew Dudley

Oct. 22, 2010

Senior linebacker Drew Dudley has been a constant force for the University of Kansas football program since the 2007 season, earning accolades such as, Associated Press All-Big 12 Honorable Mention, Big 12 Community of Champions Academic all-district first team as well as KU’s most improved defensive player. His keys to success have been patience and progression.

“I think it was good step-by-step the way I progressed,” Dudley said. “I started out as a freshman playing special teams, and that gives you respect for the guys that are on special teams. Once you aren’t on that team, you don’t think about them as much during the game, but they’re obviously an important role. They’re 1/3 of the game. I feel like I’ve played offense, defense and played special teams, so I’ve got a well-rounded view of everything that everybody does.”

His well-rounded view of the field has not only earned him a starting spot on KU’s depth chart, but has also helped him to become a respected competitor, especially in his hometown of College Station, Texas.

“One of the vivid images from my freshman year was when we played them down at their (Texas A&M) place,” Dudley said. “It was a fourth down play down near our end zone and Jorvorskie Lane, who was their big running back at the time, went up to their stands and did the J-Train move to get their crowd pumped up…and then we crushed them on that play. It was awesome.”

Dudley’s football experiences have also helped him to gain lasting memories that he will soon not forget.

“The Orange Bowl victory is a big one, and even the Georgia Tech win this year was a pretty big one,” Dudley said.

“Getting that fumble in the Georgia Tech game is one that will stick with me for a long time. Certain plays just stick with you for a long time. I can still remember from my junior year of high school getting my first interception. I can remember every detail about that instant. There are plays like that that you’ll always carry with you.”

Even though Dudley’s eligibility will be up at the end of the 2010 season, he has big plans for his future career in the engineering field.

“I’m looking to line up some type of internship, because I don’t graduate until next fall,” Dudley said. “I’ve interviewed for some summer internships in the Kansas City area. If all else fails, I’ll go back to College Station and my parents know a couple of people (in the engineering field) that might be able to offer me an internship.”

Dudley is also entertaining the possibility of playing in the NFL.

“I’m just going to see how it goes,” Dudley said. “I don’t know how interested (the NFL) would be in me, but that’s not what I’m putting all my marbles in. If they called me, I’d be ready and willing to go.”

One thing is for sure though, Dudley will continue to progress though his senior year as a standout linebacker with lots to look forward to in his future.

Katie Cook is a senior from Lenexa, Kan. She is earning double major in journalism and Spanish.