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Nick Dowd follows brother’s footsteps to Queen’s

April 17, 2013
La Salle Secondary School's Nick Dowd, shown here making a tackle in a regional playoff game last fall, committed Tuesday to play football at Queen's. "He’s a well-trained young man so he will be threatening to play as a first-year player," Gaels coach Pat Sheahan said. "Our expectations for him are high." — sportsgate.ca photo

La Salle Secondary School’s Nick Dowd, shown here making a tackle in a regional playoff game last fall, committed Tuesday to play football at Queen’s. “He’s a well-trained young man so he will be threatening to play as a first-year player,” Gaels coach Pat Sheahan said. “Our expectations for him are high.” — sportsgate.ca photo

By CLAUDE SCILLEY

Nick Dowd has played one game of football with his brother, Aaron.

“I’d like to add to that,” he said Tuesday.

Come this fall, he’ll have that chance.

Dowd was one of four recruits introduced today by Queen’s Golden Gaels coach Pat Sheahan and when he gets to training camp, the most familiar person there will be his older brother, who’s spent the last two years as a special teams player and reserve running back for the Gaels.

Nick Dowd recalled the one game the two Gananoque boys played together at La Salle Secondary School four years ago.

“It was a good game, well fought,” he said. “It ended up being a loss … but that’s the way it goes.”

Wooed by other schools, including Carleton, Dowd said his brother’s involvement in the program helped to tip the balance in Queen’s favour.

“He never forced it on me to come join him, but he’s a real role model for me,” Nick said. “We do a lot of things together, spend a lot of time together, so the fact that he’s here at Queen’s was definitely a drawing card, (but) I’ve been coming to every game for years. All the tradition makes me want to play here.”

NICK DOWD

NICK DOWD

Dowd was not only one of the most outstanding players in the Kingston Area Secondary Schools Athletic Association last fall, he was also one of the most versatile. He played linebacker, safety and tailback; he also punted and returned kicks.

In the classroom, Dowd will be studying nursing science. On the field, he projects one day to be a linebacker-defensive back hybrid of the Chris Smith mold but there’s a decent chance he could play right away.

“He’s played a lot of special teams (in high school) so he’s a guy who can go in there and play a special teams role almost instantaneously,” Sheahan said. “He’s local, so he can spend time with Coach (Pat) Tracey over the summer and familiarize himself with the package.

“Physically, he’s ahead of the curve. He’s a well-trained young man so he will be threatening to play as a first-year player. Our expectations for him are high.”

Dowd said his expectation is probably the same as most players entering their first year of university football.

“I hope to break the special teams roster, maybe play a few minutes here and there, but I hope the team altogether does a good job and makes those dates at the end of the season,” he said, alluding a Power Point slide of the team’s schedule that included playoff dates.

“They’re the ones that really count.”

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