St. Anthony's running back Jordan Gowins looks on from the...

St. Anthony's running back Jordan Gowins looks on from the sideline against Chaminade in a CHSFL football game. (Oct. 25, 2013) Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

St. Anthony's junior running back Jordan Gowins made his early college decision based on grit not glitz.

"The head coach was very up front. He told Jordan, 'If you're looking for glitter, this isn't the place,' " said St. Anthony's coach Rich Reichert, who accompanied Gowins to a Juniors Day visit to Boston College two weeks ago. "He said, 'The stadium isn't as nice as others in the ACC and the weight room is a little old. But if you want to be a running back, there are only two other places that do what we do -- Stanford and Wisconsin."

A running back is what Gowins wants to be, so Newsday's 2013 Hansen Award winner as the top football player in Suffolk, made a verbal commitment to Boston College, where, according to Reichert, he was thrilled by coach Steve Addazio's promise that "We'll run the ball 40 or 50 times a game."

That's music to Gowins' ears. At 6-1, 215, he runs with speed and power that produced 2,012 yards and 24 touchdowns for the Friars, last year's CHSFL champions. "If you're a running back, it's a good place to go, a perfect fit. He should be successful there," Reichert said. "Academically, you can't find a better place. And they're a downhill power running team with three tights. They let the back see things and run the ball."

The Eagles went 7-6 last year and their senior running back, Andrew Williams, carried 355 times for 2,233 yards and 18 touchdowns, was a Heisman Trophy finalist and won the Doak Walker Award given to the nation's top collegiate running back.

"Jordan is comfortable where he's going. He turned down a visit to Penn State," Reichert said. "It's a verbal commitment, but I told him to treat it like a contract. They're closing the door on other guys because you said you're coming. And this decision takes the pressure off him for next year."

A senior season that Reichert says will prepare Gowins for his heavy college workload.

"He's going to be our central focus. Last year we had other threats who were pretty good," Reichert said. "He's going to be the guy. I think he'll get the ball 25 to 30 times a game. He's got to learn how to carry that kind of load."

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