Alex Bookser of Mt. Lebanon was invited to attend the Detroit Lions minicamp with the opportunity to earn an NFL contract. The 6-6, 315-pound offensive lineman is one of a dozen undrafted free agents hoping to win a spot on the Lions’ roster.

The 23-year-old son of Rick and Amy Bookser played for the University of Pittsburgh while earning his bachelor’s degree in communications.

Bookser became an attractive prospect to NFL scouts because he displayed valuable versatility starting at both guard and tackle for the Panthers. During his collegiate career, he played in 50 games, starting 39, and earned All-ACC honorable mention recognition in each of his three final seasons. He also showcased his skills to scouts and fans during the East-West Shrine Game played at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Bookser combines brawn and brains on the field as he was one of six Panthers named to the Hampshire Honor Society by the National Football Foundation & College Hall of Fame. The prestigious organization is comprised of players from all divisions of play who maintained a cumulative 3.2 grade-point average or better throughout their college career.

Additionally, Bookser was a semifinalist for the National Football Foundation’s William V. Campbell Trophy, annually presented to the nation’s top Scholar-Athlete. A team captain at Pitt, he also was twice named to the All-ACC Academic Football team.

Bookser was one of Pennsylvania’s most decorated offensive line prospects. He was selected All-State by the Pennsylvania Sports Writers and All-Almanac. A two-way starter at Mt. Lebanon, he earned All-Southeastern Conference first-team defensive tackle when he recorded 34 tackles, seven tackles for loss and blocked two field goals as a senior. A three-year starter on the offensive line, he led Lebo to two Quad-A playoff appearances.

Bookser was rated the No. 2 overall prospect in Pennsylvania by 247 Sports and No. 3 by Scout and No. 4 by Rivals and was Selected to play in the Big 33 Football Classic. He rated a consensus national Top 25 offensive line prospect by major scouting services.

In addition to playing football at Mt. Lebanon, Bookser competed in track and field. He was a standout in the shot put and discus, where he finished in the Top 10 during the WPIAL championships as a junior.

Almanac Sports Editor

An award-winning journalist, Eleanor Bailey has been employed by Observer Publishing Company since 1982. She is the sports editor at The Almanac and a contributor for the Observer-Reporter.

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