For some time now the focus at quarterback for the 2021 class has been on Parish Episcopal’s Preston Stone and for good reason. The blue-chip signal caller earned an offer from the Texas staff back in the spring of 2018 and since then the Longhorns have been the perceived favorite. Despite the Longhorns being in a favorable position, they have continued to keep their options open and have continued to evaluate other options at the position.
Last month Katy Tompkins quarterback Jalen Milroe received an offer from Texas as visiting and throwing for Tim Beck and Tom Herman and it immediately raised several eyebrows given where Texas has stood with Stone over the past several months. Milroe is a talented prospect in his own right and holds offers from some of the nation’s elite programs and to make things more interesting he resides in the Lone Star State.
The Texas staff quickly found itself in an interesting position. Do you wait and hold out for the five-star recruit who is still taking his time and weighing his options, or do you take the commitment from the Top 100 player who is ready to get in the boat right now? It’s a tough situation to be in, but at the same time it’s a good problem to have.
Ultimately, the Longhorns opted to go with the latter and they now have their gun slinger for the 2021 class locked down, as Milroe made the call to commit to Texas over several big time offers.
Name: Jalen Milroe
High School: Obra D. Tompkins HS
City & State: Katy, Tx
40-yard time: 4.64
2018: 98/174 Passing (56% completion), 1420 yards, 10 TDs/3 INTs, 124 Rush Atts, 609 yards (4.9 YPC), 10 TDs
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Jalen Milroe is a four-star dual-threat quarterback prospect out of Tompkins high school in Katy, TX. The 2019 season will be Milroe’s second season as the starting signal caller for the Tompkins after taking over the reins in 2018. Milroe has a relatively small sample size to date, but he already flashes tools that project well to the next level. At 6’1.5, 184 pounds, Milroe already possesses solid size and a solid, athletic frame that will be able to carry more good weight as he continues to grow and mature eventually hits a college weight room. As a passer, Milroe already shows adequate arm strength to make throws at each level and it will likely continue to improve in strength as he continues to mature and refines his mechanics. Milroe shoes the ability to fit the ball into tight windows over the middle field and shows that he can push the ball down the field on deeper routes. While Milroe did have some underthrows on deep balls down the field and needs to improve his overall touch on those kinds of throws, I think he will get a better feel and improve that area with more reps and coaching. Milroe also still has a lot of room to grow when it comes to getting off his first read and being able to scan the field as he goes through his progressions. Again, that is something that I hope to see improve over time as he continues to grow more comfortable in the position and his mental processing improves. Milroe’s athleticism really makes him a tough target in the pocket, as he is very elusive and uses his feet often to extend plays while keeping his eyes down the field. Milroe shows that he isn’t afraid to pull the ball down and take what the defense gives him underneath and he shows good speed and solid wiggle in the open field that allows him to get yards in chunks. Milroe has more than enough athleticism that he will need to be accounted for in the defensive game plan or he will brutalize you on the ground. Along with being an impromptu runner, Milroe shows the capability to be featured on designed quarterback runs such as power read and shows that he isn’t shy about taking contact from defenders at times. This part of his game is something that makes him a really good fit for what Texas does offensively, and that is something that gives his value as a prospect a bump in this case. Overall, Milroe is a very “toolsy” prospect with very good upside given the fit he is heading to, but he still has a lot of maturing to do within the position as he continues to head towards his ceiling as a player.
While I know there are plenty out there that will love the staff’s decision to take Milroe’s commitment at this juncture, I am sure there will be several who will be a little confused given how hard the staff has pursued Preston Stone. Personally, I can make the case for either prospect and I can’t necessarily fault the staff for opting to get a guy in the boat that is 1. A good player in his own right and 2. A player that is a perfect fit for what they offensively.
There is certainly a good amount of risk in this decision by the staff because now you are potentially letting a 5-star caliber recruit go elsewhere when you have been the leader in the clubhouse for some time. While it seems likely that the staff could stay on Stone and try to make it a two-quarterback class, that seems unlikely to work out given how the quarterback room is shaping up on campus.
With all that said, getting Milroe in the boat can only help Texas in its recruiting efforts, as they now have their signal caller on board so that he can start courting the in-state elite prospects. Milroe is teammates with a major Texas target in Tunmise Adeleye and getting Milroe in burnt orange certainly won’t hurt Texas’ efforts when it comes to trying to sway the elite defender to joining his teammate in Austin.
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