Welcome back to Phil for the Game, your glimpse into the sports community of Boone County.
Since prep football season is merely weeks away, I wanted to discuss quarterback play in Boone County for the upcoming season.
Gone are a pair of CVN All-County selections in Van High's Gavin Smith, who had a flair for orchestrating come-from- behind wins and Sherman High's JT Hensley, who set records at Sherman and guided his team to a trio of playoff berths.
Hensley will go down as one of Sherman's finest athletes in the school's history. The first team all-state selection also earned an MVP award in the North-South game.
Returning for Scott is junior Michael Clay who had the job sewn up last year but suffered an injury that derailed his season. The athletic signal caller will have every opportunity to lead new head coach Shane Griffith's offense.
While I call Coach Griffith new, it is worthy of noting that through a previous stint as the Scott coach, he is the winningest football coach in school history.
I believe that with more consistent offensive line play, Clay can flourish without pressure in Griffith's back-to-basics, run first offense. A stable of capable backs will also help Clay develop nicely.
In the few times I've seen the team this spring running through the playbook, Clay looks confident and accurate. I'm looking forward to seeing how the black and gold receivers respond and who will emerge as his "go to" guy.
Across the mountain at Seth, I realize that the position is up for grabs but I'd be surprised if junior Davey Jarrell doesn't capture the slot.
If you watched the Tide during baseball season, Jarrell was a catalyst on the base paths and a contact hitter that put the ball in play. While playing catcher, his athleticism is evident.
Jarrell isn't your typical slow-moving backstop. I was only able to see him in mop up duty last year behind Hensley, but it was evident that he is in tune with what Coach Michael Showalter is trying to achieve.
I'd like to see the recent high-energy, multi-skilled athletes continue pushing that position forward in the county, which really started a decade ago with the Tide's Colby Treadway.
Over at Van, the loss of Smith to graduation will bring in a new era. I reached out to coach Stephen "Foot" Price to see what his options are come the dog days of August.
I did reach out to coach Price at Van, assuming he is still coaching the Bulldogs this season regarding what their QB prospects are, but I didn't hear back from him before my print deadline.
I'll leave you this week with a favorite sports-related quote.
"I'm glad I don't play anymore. I could never learn all of those handshakes." - Hall of Fame Shortstop Phil Rizzuto.
Email CVN reporter Phil Perry at firstname.lastname@example.org.