Mississippi high school quarterbacks had a coming out party in 2019, and the state is full of college prospects who are poised to have big seasons this year.
Some are already household names and others could join that list soon.
Here’s a look at the Top 10 quarterbacks in the state headed into the 2020 season.
TOP 10 QUARTERBACKS IN MISSISSIPPI
Luke Altmyer, SR, Starkville
What’s not to like about a 6-foot-2, 190-pound quarterback who just gets better every year? Starkville’s senior gunslinger is a 4-star, pro-style prospect who currently ranks as the No. 12 quarterback and No. 207 recruit in the country for the class of 2021.
Altmyer burst onto the season in his sophomore season with 1,952 passing yards and 19 touchdowns. As a junior last season, he completed 251 of 374 pass attempts for 3,093 yards with 37 touchdowns and just five picks.
Altmyer committed to Florida State in February. He chose the Seminoles over offers from all three in-state schools, Alabama, LSU and Louisville, among others. He recently took part in the Elite 11 Quarterback camp.
Ty Keyes, SR, Taylorsville
There’s not much left to say about Taylorsville’s splendid quarterback Ty Keyes. At 6-foot-2 and 205 pounds, the 4-star prospect is ranked as the No. 18 quarterback and No. 340 overall recruit in the country by 247sports.
Keyes put up phenomenal numbers for the third year in a row as a junior, completing 213 of his 309 passes for 3,721 yards with 41 touchdowns and just seven interceptions. With 12,019 total passing yards in three seasons as a starter, Keyes is well within range of breaking former St. Stanislaus quarterback Myles Brennan’s career record of 15,138.
The rising senior holds offers from all three in-state schools, as well as Auburn, Oregon and Nebraska, among others. As of mid-July, he remained uncommitted. We’ll know soon where Keyes is headed, as he announced recently he’ll make a decision before his senior year starts.
Zy McDonald, SR, Ridgeland
Zy McDonald has been building momentum for two years, and Ridgeland’s 5-foot-10, 185-pound 3-star quarterback is looking for an even bigger season in 2020. McDonald currently ranks as the No. 37 pro-style prospect in the country.
The three-year starter put up incredible numbers as a junior, completing 217 of his 360 passes for 3,252 yards with 25 touchdowns and just six interceptions. He has averaged 231 yards and nearly two touchdowns a game through his first three years.
McDonald turned heads when he committed to Louisiana-Lafayette in May. He holds offers from Army, Navy, Georgia State and Jackson State, but could earn more with a strong showing as a senior.
Chandler Pittman, SR, Magee
The first dual-threat guy on our list is Magee playmaker Chandler Pittman. At 5-foot-9 and 165 pounds, the 3-star prospect makes up for what he lacks in size with supreme athleticism. He’s currently rated as the No. 85 athlete prospect in the country by 247sports.
Pittman was a one-man wrecking crew for Magee last season, completing an efficient 202 of 279 passes for 3,012 yards with 26 touchdowns and 14 interceptions. He also rushed for 1,354 yards and 19 touchdowns in 14 games.
The talented rising senior has yet to name a college destination, but holds offers from Ole Miss, Southern Miss, Florida State, Memphis, Tulane and a slew of other FBS programs.
Jake Weir, SR, Tupelo
Tupelo’s Jake Weir burst onto the scene in 2019 with a solid junior season, and he’s certainly a player to watch headed into his senior year. At 6-foot-2 and 205 pounds, he’s got all the tools to take Tupelo back to the playoffs.
Last season, the Green Wave quarterback played his role perfectly by completing 152 of 251 passes for 2,257 yards with 20 touchdowns and 12 picks. He’s a student of the game and works hard in the classroom as well.
Weir missed an opportunity to travel to camps this past summer, but has received interest from Memphis, Austin Peay, Cornell and Brown, among others, and holds an offer from UT-Martin.
Ruben “Deuce” Lee, SR, Moss Point
At 6-foot-1 and 200 pounds, nobody is mistaking Ruben Lee for a prototypical pro-style pocket passer, but what he’s done at Moss Point in the past two years is undeniable.
He showed remarkable progress in his junior season. After throwing for 1,831 yards and 15 touchdowns with 13 interceptions as a sophomore, Lee completed 165 of his 285 pass attempts for 2,553 yards and 25 touchdowns with just nine picks last season.
Lee has garnered some attention from college coaches. He currently holds scholarship offers from Southeastern Louisiana and a slew of junior colleges.
Deandre Smith, JR, Greenwood
The next entry on our list is a prospect whose stock is rising as fast as anyone. Greenwood’s Deandre Smith is a 6-foot-1, 200-pound passer who has already impressed college scouts by leading Greenwood to 24 wins in his first two seasons.
Smith passed for 1,667 yards with 17 touchdowns and 7 interceptions as a freshman. He was even better as a sophomore, completing 120 of his 207 passes for 2,537 yards with 27 touchdowns and just five picks as a sophomore.
His accomplishments on the field have already garnered him offers from Southern Miss and Arkansas State, but that list is sure to grow if he continues to impress in his junior season.
Zach Wilcke, JR, Hernando
Another player who lit up the scoreboard as a sophomore is Hernando’s Zach Wilcke. At 6-foot-2 and 180 pounds, Wilcke is a quintessential pocket passer with a high football IQ who has had limited exposure to college scouts.
Wilcke completed 134 of his 285 passes for 1,801 yards with 17 touchdowns and 15 interceptions last season on a Hernando team that went 2-9 overall and 0-7 in Region 1-6A.
Wilcke has drawn interest from some smaller FCS schools, but would likely have more if he had been able to attend camps this summer. Look for Wilcke, the younger brother of former Hernando great Robert Wilcke, to garner more attention with a solid junior season.
Alan Follis, SR, West Jones
One of the fastest-rising stars of the 2021 quarterback class is West Jones’ Alan Follis, who has been a dependable field general for the Mustangs over the past two seasons. Follis is not a guy who has a bunch of ratings and national recruiting scrutiny, but that could all change this year.
In his first year as a starter in 2018, Follis threw for 1,864 yards and 15 touchdowns, with just 5 interceptions. He bettered his touchdown to pick ratio last season – with 22 touchdowns and 7 interceptions – and added 1,788 more passing yards. He’s not a burner, but Follis has also rushed for more than 750 yards and 17 touchdowns in two seasons as well.
Follis hasn’t received much attention from FBS schools, but holds offers from Jones County Junior College and Gulf Coast Community College.
Khi Holiday, SR, Tupelo Christian Prep
The last entry on our list comes from one of the smallest schools in the state. He may not get the publicity of his counterparts at bigger schools, but Tupelo Christian’s 5-foot-9, 160-pound dual-threat quarterback has been every bit as impressive through two seasons. He’s currently rated as a 3-star athlete by 247sports.
Good things happen for Tupelo Christian when Holiday is under center. In two seasons as a starter, he’s thrown for 5,312 yards with 63 touchdowns and 19 interceptions. He’s also rushed for 2,158 yards and 28 touchdowns.
Holiday had garnered interest from UL-Monroe, Memphis and North Alabama, but announced in June he was committed to play both football and baseball at Northeast Mississippi Community College.
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