MOUNT ORAB, Ohio (BVM) – Class of 2023 athletes around the country are fighting to show college coaches they can excel at the next level, and one of those seniors is Western Brown High School quarterback Drew Novak.
For four seasons, Novak has been the Broncos’ signal-caller. Despite having him under center, Western Brown recorded an overall record of 7-11 in Novak’s first two years as the starting QB.
But it wouldn’t be all for naught. Nick Osborne, a 2015 Western Brown graduate, was hired as head coach ahead of Novak’s sophomore year. With Osborne and a year of varsity experience, Novak was primed to have great junior and senior seasons. But he exceeded every expectation.
“Leadership-wise, he’s grown up a lot,” Osborne said. “He just turned 17 years old last week. He’s still maturing…and when that kid turns 20, 21 years old, that kid is going to be an absolute freak.”
Eager to prove to the nation he’s a top QB prospect, the 6-foot-6 Novak went on to throw for 5,269 yards (sixth all-time in OHSAA history) in his junior season, passing Cincinnati Bengals quarterback Joe Burrow. To go along with this record, Novak also recorded 56 touchdown passes (No. 13 all-time in OHSAA history) which saw him pass Pittsburgh Steeler legend Ben Roethlisberger (54 TD passes in 1999).
Congrats to Western Brown Senior QB Drew Novak who surpassed the 10,000 yards passing mark in the 1st quarter against Hillsboro tonight!! pic.twitter.com/iqnKjQKN7p
— Western Brown HS (@wbhsathletics) August 19, 2022
Now seven games into his senior season, Novak has continued his record-breaking ways passing Burrow, R.J. Jacobs and Mark Waid in OHSAA career passing yards.
— Mike Dyer (@MikeDyer) October 1, 2022
“Personally, I really didn’t have many individual goals, just a bunch of team goals,” Novak said. “But I knew coming into this season I had a chance for that…During the game, I really didn’t know about it. Afterward, I think my parents told me about it, [but] it was a pretty cool experience.”
Despite setting these records, Novak is still waiting for the right offer to come his way. He’s had some interest from major programs such as Iowa State and Illinois, but some smaller schools have kept tabs on him and have made official offers.
— Drew Novak (@drewnovak02) August 6, 2022
— Drew Novak (@drewnovak02) June 22, 2022
“It [the recruiting process] gets kind of overwhelming sometimes,” Novak said. But at the end of the day, I’m just worried about high school right now, and after that, I’ll worry about college.”
At the same time, if any athlete is striving to play a DI sport and they’re not getting the offer they want, it can prove to be detrimental to their mindset. But with a coach like Osborne, Novak has stepped up to be a leader for the Broncos.
“I think my leadership has gotten a lot better since my freshman year,” Novak said. “I think more of the guys look up to me and trust me more. Coach Osborne has taught me that you have to hold leaders to a higher standard than other players, and I think that’s really helped me.”
It’s evident that Novak has strived to make himself a better player and person throughout his career at Western Brown. And those who saw Novak play at Western Brown are sure to remember he brought everything he could to the gridiron on Friday nights. Now Novak and the Broncos are striving to make it to their first-ever state championship game.
“He’s not a big stat guy,” Osborne said. “I think when he gets a little older, he’s going to sit back and look and realize what an amazing high school career he had and how truly special it was. He’s not a ‘me guy,’ it’s the team. He just wants to win, play with his best friends and lead us to a state championship in December.”