With Texas State's quarterback options in flux thanks to Damian Williams' potential academic issue, it might be a good idea to look at the four true freshman that will likely compete to either take snaps this season or at the very least be backing up Williams should he return.
Withers signed four quarterbacks in February and what happens in the next month is critical for each of them. Depending on how things shake out in fall camp (and in the classroom with Williams) at least one of the four will be looking at a position change and possible a transfer if any of them believe they can hold down a job anywhere else.
We're basing our observations on highlight films from high school.
A quick and necessary disclaimer on this inexact science...we hate relying on highlight film to do any sort of evaluation because it's highlight film. There are no incompletions or interceptions chronicled here. You get a very edited look at a player. It can be instructive in a couple areas. One, you can't hide a bad arm on a highlight reel. Two, you generally get a good idea of how a player rates from an athletic standpoint. Finally, you tend to get an idea of what a player was asked to do in his high school system and how well or poorly that translates to the next level.
Jaylin Nelson 5-8, 200 pounds
Nelson comes to Texas State via Duncanville where he was a very good dual threat quarterback. He accounted for 51 career touchdowns and led First Baptist Academy to a TAPPS State Title as a freshman.
- Here's his film.
- Undersized at 5-8.
- Ran a spread offense at Duncanville, primarily threw pre-determined routes.
- Adequate arm strength in high school, but we suspect he'll have issues against FBS competition.
- Compact motion. Hard to tell if he can reset and adjust his feet.
- Physical runner, lacks straight-line speed.
- 4.7 speed confirmed at the Nike combine. Looks about right.
Willie Jones III 6-3, 190 pounds Silsbee
Jones transfered to Silsbee from Beaumont Legacy Christian as a senior. He helped Silsbee get to the playoffs where they ran into BEASTexas power Carthage in the first round. Was a multi-sport player at Silsbee. His production garnered offers from several FCS schools as well as San Diego State.
- You can see his film here.
- Ideal size at 6-3
- Fluid athlete.
- Ran a fair amount under center in 11 and 12 personnel.
- Played out of the shotgun as well.
- 4.5 listed speed. Looks generous.
- Raw thrower, but has good arm strength.
- Footwork needs work.
Jaylen Gipson 6-2, 195 pounds Mexia
Gipson had offers from Texas Tech, Colorado State, New Mexico and several other FBS schools. Mexia won just two games in 2016.
- Here are Gipson's highlights.
- Good size, runs well.
- Very direct runner, little wasted movement.
- 4.67 40 confirmed by the Nike Combine.
- Ran a spread at Mexia.
- Offense is similar to what he'll run at Texas State.
- Almost exclusively pre-determined throws.
- Nice arm strength, little wasted motion in delivery.
Kishawn Kelley 6-2, 190 pounds Corsicana
Kelley held an offer from SMU when he signed with Texas State. As a senior Corsicana went one round deep into the playoffs where they ran into eventual state runner-up Temple.
- See his highlights here.
- Played running back and quarterback at Corsicana.
- Completed less than 50% of his passes.
- Used as a running back even when playing quarterback.
- 4.78 40 at the Nike combine.
- Elongated throwing motion, pretty long holster movement.
- Bad feet on his throws.
- Will have a hard time throwing accurately on the move or when he has to adjust to coverage.
- Physical in the run game.