You might look at that collection of two letters and a number as some sort of typo, but Larry Lowe sees it as way more than that. To him it means destined for greatness, a motto he and his teammates at Stafford High thought of years ago. His playmaking abilities on the field are born from a tireless worth ethic and only help him on his path to success in life.
Lowe was raised by his two parents, Angela and Larry, Sr. He was born in Fort Polk, Louisiana but later moved to Fort Hood, Texas for a good portion of his childhood. Lowe watched baseball and looked up to Ken Griffey, Jr. like a lot of young boys in the nineties. The way Griffey made baseball look so effortless on offense and defense was a true marvel. Lowe played baseball growing up as well as basketball.
In 2000, Lowe moved to Stafford, Virginia. He continued to play baseball, but soon after had to quit.
“I was acting up and my mom was having none of it, so she made me quit it,” Lowe said.
For years he had played football for fun in the backyard with his friends. It wasn’t until eighth grade that he considered playing in an organized league.
“A coach saw me and my athletic abilities. He said with my long arms and how high I could jump that I would be a natural receiver.”
Larry is not the only athlete in his family. His younger sister, Ashlee, is a star basketball player at Brook Point High in Stafford, setting the steals record. She is looking into attending Radford in the fall.
Lowe took to football with a natural zeal, excelling at each step of the way. As a sophomore at Stafford, he realized he needed to focus on just football and that it could be his future.
“Torrey Smith played for our rival high school, South Stafford. I saw him in games and thought to myself, ‘I want to do that’. From then on, I was only focused on football.”
Lowe’s play at Stafford brought the attention of multiple colleges and universities. North Carolina, Maryland, Virginia and North Carolina State all expressed interest in the young receiver. Eventually Shepherd came knocking and Lowe felt it was in his best interest to be a Ram. He didn’t sign until two days prior to the national signing day, admitting it was very stressful.
“Those Division 1 schools had told me to be patient and that they were watching, but Shepherd showed that they really wanted me. It only made me work harder to prove those other schools who doubted me wrong.”
The work ethic is inspired by Lowe’s mother, a staff sergeant in the military.
“I’d go to work with her and see how she handled herself. She didn’t take anything from anyone, male or female. She knew she was in charge and set an example for me and my sister. She is a true motivator for me.”
Lowe cited his mom’s everlasting energy as a driving force for him to work harder. She works from very early in the morning to six at night, then goes to the gym for a couple hours. Yet her day is not done until after she completes her homework towards her criminal justice degree at night before bed.
That’s week days for her.
On weekends, Angela will take part in various 5k and 10k runs, whether traditional or of the mudder variety. Now I can see where Lowe gets his other motto, “No days off”.
Larry started as a freshman at Shepherd, an impressive feat for any young football player.
“I had a feeling of ‘I’m the best’. But it was a learning experience. You aren’t going to be the best from the beginning, but I learned along the way.”
Against Charleston that fall of his freshman season, Larry dropped a big pass and it contributed to a loss for the Rams. It became a sort of cancer in his attitude, as he lost focus and dropped more passes during the season.
“I talked to my dad and coaches, and they helped me get back on track. You can’t let it get to you.”
One of the coaches he looked to for advice was his Pop Warner coach Mark Dutel. He still stays in close contact with him to this day.
“I have known Coach Dutel since I was eight years old. He did whatever was possible to show me the way, not only as a player but as a person. He’ll call me all the time to meet at the gym at six a.m. to practice. He gives me a lot of insight and advice and I really look up to him.”
At Shepherd, Lowe was coached by the long-tenured Monte Cater.
“He is a great coach. Very busy, but always makes time for his players and looks out for us. The whole coaching staff at Shepherd is great,” Lowe said.
Larry is studying Fitness and Exercise Science at Shepherd, hoping one day to become a personal trainer and even open up his own gym- not just for profit in his wallet, but to help those less fortunate profit from having somewhere to go and get guidance.
“Where I am from, there aren’t a lot of facilities for kids to go to. I’d focus it on workouts for specific sports. There are coaches that don’t coach like they should, and I just want to be able to provide the right kind of coaching for young athletes.”
Lowe has been very busy of late, taking part in the BSN Showcase in Akron, Ohio and had a pro day at Fairmont University. He expressed to me his feelings on both events.
“The BSN Showcase was a great opportunity to show my hands and my agility. I played at a school with a predominant running game, so my stats don’t reflect my abilities. I met a lot of good people here and it helped me see my strengths and weaknesses as a player. With the talent here at the showcase, I can definitely learn from others. As for Fairmont, we didn’t get a lot of reps. It was not as much as I expected and I hope to really step it up in the NFL Regional Combine in Baltimore.”
That regional combine takes place on March 23rd, and Larry knows if he does well there, he could get invited to the Super Regional in Dallas, Texas.
“Some people thought I was too big to play receiver, but I think I am at a point where people know of what I can do, and if they don’t- I’ll continue to prove them wrong.”
That unwavering confidence is sure to set him up for success somewhere, whether it is on the field or off of it.