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Ian Book is a backup quarterback for the Philadelphia Eagles in the National Football League. From the hills of El Dorado, California, to the city of brotherly love and everywhere in between, Ian Book’s story from an undersized recruit to setting Notre Dame’s all-time win record to being a member of the best team in the NFL is nothing short of remarkable.
Book grew up loving all sports, but football is what captivated his heart. He would go on to attend Oak Ridge High School where he threw for 7,632 yards and 78 touchdowns.
Book was a superstar, and several teams came calling. Book originally committed to a local school, Washington State, before flipping his commitment to attend a school across the country.
This school wasn’t any ordinary school. This school is the most prestigious and historic program in all of College Football. Known for their shiny helmets and the figure of Touchdown Jesus that rises over the stadium, Book took his talents to South Bend, Indiana to dawn the blue and gold of Notre Dame.
Book redshirted in his freshman year at Notre Dame. It was in his second year in which he rocketed to stardom.
After coming in for an injured Brandon Wimbush against UNC, Book didn’t see much action until the 2018 Citrus Bowl against LSU. Wimbush struggled and Book was inserted into the game and won the hearts of Notre Dame fans thanks to his heroic play and iconic throw to Miles Boykin to win the game in the final seconds of the game to help Notre Dame win 21-18.
“Just being able to go in at the end of the 1st quarter and be able to play was amazing. I knew I was going to be able to play. They had a plan for Wimbush and myself. But once I got in I was able to do what I had to do and play the rest of the game which was pretty cool and we started to click as an offense. I knew I was throwing that back shoulder fade to Myles for what feels like forever but was only a year, but he’s a long-range receiver who can go up and make every catch and did an unbelievable job, made both guys miss, and it was a pretty cool moment and my welcome to college football’ moment,” said Book in regards to his iconic performance in the Citrus Bowl.
Book went on to have 30 wins as the starting quarterback at the University of Notre Dame, surpassing the likes of 1947 Heisman Winner, Johnny Lujack, and his offensive coordinator, Tommy Rees.
Book’s best moments included two trips to the College Football Playoffs, a historic achievement for a historic school that is limited in recruiting thanks to rigorous academic standards.
However, perhaps the greatest moment of the Ian Book era at Notre Dame wasn’t the two college football semifinal appearances. It was the regular season classic at home against Clemson in which Notre Dame knocked off the number 1 team in the country 47-40 in one of the greatest college football games in recent memory.
Book through for 310 yards and 1 touchdown and contributed for 67 yards on the ground.
Dispute an early fumble, Book had a short memory and kept on plugging away, willing Notre Dame to a historic upset win.
“A great game, that was something early in the week I knew something special would happen. I felt like that was one of the times in college football I felt like the entire building believed that we were going to beat the number-one team in the country. That doesn’t happen everywhere but that is something cool about Notre Dame,” said Book, “we had a bunch of guys that were brought in and I felt like we were going to win before it even happened. (About the fumble play) I thought I was going to score but the guy made a really good play and knocked the ball out. In my career, whenever there is a bad play, I try to forget about it and move on and I remember going to the sideline and everybody encouraging me and saying I’ll be fine. I had a moment of in one ear out the other and I’ll be fine. I felt good and kept fighting the whole game and it came down to the last few plays and the fans storming the field during the pandemic was surreal so it felt pretty good.”
That game cemented Book’s status as a Notre Dame legend.
Whether Notre Dame fans appreciate him is up to the fans themselves, but they can certainly not deny the impact Ian Book left on the modern-day era of Notre Dame Football. From an undersized recruit to an all-time win leader, two CFP appearances, and a win against the #1 team in the country isn’t too shabby for somebody who was told by many online that he is too small to play the quarterback position.
Book went on to get drafted in the fourth round by the New Orleans Saints and in his rookie season had one start. That start coming in a game against the Miami Dolphins. Although not the ideal game for Book, he gave it his all but the Saints weren’t able to get much clicking due to injuries plus COVID holding the team back from putting most of their primary starters on the field.
Now in his second year, and playing for the Philadelphia Eagles, Book has been a member of the Eagles squad that has defied all odds by winning the NFC East and finishing the year 14-3. The Eagles earned the #1 seed in the NFC and will host the New York Giants in the NFC Divisional Round.
Book’s rise from a lesser-known recruit to a member of the best team in the NFL is a remarkable story about hard work, determination, and staying true to yourself.
“Instead of proving others wrong, I want to prove myself right,” said Ian Book, perfectly describing both his career and life motto.
Book is on a mission to prove himself, the little kid that once dreamed of playing in the NFL, right, rather than all of the haters wrong. The kid from El Dorado Hills is on a mission to do the things he set out to do for himself rather than the validation of those who didn’t believe in him.
An elite mindset and top individual, Ian Book is very well on his path to a Lombardi Trophy and a Super Bowl ring.
The Eagles will need to take care of business against the Giants and the winner of SF vs Dallas/Tampa Bay and then the eventual champion of the AFC.
For now, it’s one step at a time for Book and the Eagles.
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