Luke Bowanko, a former Centreville High and University of Virginia standout offensive lineman, was selected in the sixth round of the NFL draft by the Jacksonville Jaguars on Saturday.
Chosen as the No. 206 overall pick, Bowanko became the third U-Va. player taken in this year’s draft, following fellow offensive lineman Morgan Moses, who went to the Redskins in the third round (66th overall), and defensive lineman Brent Urban, whom the Baltimore Ravens snagged in the fourth round (134th overall).
Bowanko was a three-year varsity starter at Centreville under former coach Gerry Pannoni and earned a spot on the 2008 All-Met football honorable mention list. Ranked as the nation’s No. 39 offensive tackle by ESPN, the athletic lineman garnered offers from Florida State, Boston College and Syracuse before signing with Virginia.
In Charlottesville, the 6-foot-6, 300-pounder evolved into an impact player for the Cavaliers. Bowanko started the final 37 games of his college career, was named a co-captain and played both the center and guard positions.
With Brad Meester, last year’s starting center for Jacksonville, retiring from the NFL, Bowanko is expected to compete for the starting position or playing time entering training camp this fall. Should he make the team, Bowanko will have a homecoming of sorts in Week 2 of the NFL season when the Washington Redskins host the Jaguars on Sept. 14.