Ross Bowers | Bothell Quarterback Is Rising Star

Bothell (Wash.) High School quarterback Ross Bowers is a star on the rise. He’s only a sophomore, so you won’t likely hear about him in recruiting circles for another season or two – but Bowers will be a big recruit when the time comes. It’s early in the season, but I’ve watched Bowers play twice this year, and his skills shine even against the best competition in the state.

Ross Bowers Bothell Quarterback

Ross Bowers

The first time I watched Ross Bowers he was facing off against Max Browne (the top quarterback recruit in the country this season) and No. 1 ranked Skyline (Wash.). Bothell quickly jumped out to a 14-0 lead behind two touchdown passes by Bowers. I didn’t know anything about him, but his skill was apparent. I was so focused on Browne early in the game, that I didn’t even know Bowers’ name until I checked the roster after his first touchdown pass. That’s when I realized Bowers was only a sophomore, and I was watching a future star in the making.

Bowers made some late mistakes in that game (showing he still has room to improve), but he finished 15 of 33 for 224 yards with three touchdowns and one interception. He also lost a fumble deep in his own territory late in the contest that gave Skyline a safety. Despite his mistakes, the Skyline players were impressed with Bowers’ skills:

“I’ve gone to camps with him, and he’s a heck of a player,” Skyline defensive back Nic Sblendorio told The Seattle Times after the game. “He’s for sure going to be a D-I player. He’s just a heck of a quarterback.”

Ross Bowers Quarterback Bothell

Ross Bowers in action against Bellevue

Bowers’ stat sheet wasn’t quite as impressive last week when he battled Bellevue (Wash.) — the top 3A team in the state. Bowers had no protection, so he had no time to throw the football. Bowers took hit after hit after hit. One hit was so big that it jarred the ball loose, and it was scooped up by Bellevue for a touchdown. Bowers could have pouted or acted defeated, but he didn’t — he kept popping right back up. That’s what I liked most about him. Instead of whining or acting injured, Bowers looked motivated to get up and try again. It was clear he wanted more than anything to just shove it down Bellevue’s throat. That drive, motivation and maturity will help Bowers make it to the next level.

It’s easy to forget Ross Bowers is just 15-years-old when you watch him play. He won’t even be a freshman in college until 2015. Bowers is already listed at 6’2″ 175 pounds, and he has plenty of room/time him to grow. He comes from good genes. Bowers’ dad John was a long-time assistant football coach at the D-I level (he even coached linebackers for two season under Urban Meyer at Bowling Green), while his mom Joanne is the head women’s gymnastics coach at the University of Washington.

Here’s a look at Ross Bowers from a camp/combine this spring:

Listed as a pro-style quarterback by Rivals.com, Bowers has Florida, LSU and Texas listed as some of his college choices. Only time – and tons of recruiting letters, visits, etc. – will tell where Ross Bowers will end up. All I know is that it will be fun to see how his career shakes out. I’ll be one of the many watching closely.

I’m always excited to hear from you. Simply leave a comment below or connect with me on Twitter, Facebook and/or Google+. Don’t forget to also visit http://allaroundtim.com for more great sports coverage!

Max Browne | Future USC Quarterback Shining At Skyline

It’s not hard to see why USC jumped all over Skyline quarterback Max Browne. He’s the top ranked quarterback prospect in the country for a reason. The kid is 6’5″ 215 pounds and he’s just starting his senior year of high school. On top of his prototypical size, Browne is oozing with talent, and it looks like there’s plenty of room for him to get even better before he heads to USC, wrapping up his final year at Skyline.

Max Browne Skyline Heading To USC

Max Browne

I watched Max Browne play in person for the first time last Friday night. It was Skyline’s season opener against Bothell. Browne admitted to me after the game that he started slow, but his efforts were still enough to lead Skyline to a 33-21 win. Browne went 24-of-35 for 291 yards, with one touchdown and an interception. Browne did some damage on the ground as well, running 11 times for 25 yards and a touchdown.

I was most impressed with Browne when I interviewed him after the game. He was a nice, well spoken, and smart kid. When you add intelligence to Browne’s package of size and skill, it’s not hard to see why Browne is the No. 3 overall prospect in the country — and why USC is itching to get him into their program.

Max Browne has a lot to live up to this season, but it’s mostly his own fault after putting up gaudy numbers the last two years at Skyline. Browne went for 4,034 yards, 45 touchdowns and only seven interceptions last year, and that’s after throwing for 4,182 yards, 50 touchdowns and 13 interceptions as a sophomore. His resume was more than enough for USC to throw a scholarship at Browne, who committed to the Trojans in April. According to Rivals.com, Browne also had offers from Alabama, Auburn, Oklahoma and many other national powers.

The praise for Max Browne comes from everywhere. ESPN says Browne is ”one of the more complete passers in terms of measurables, arm strength and ability to make all the throws,” while Scout.com says “mechanically, you could do an instruction video on him as his ball placement, release, and drops are college level right now.” Aside from his foot speed (which is about the only knock on Browne), the compliments go on and on.

Here’s a video of Max Browne so you can judge for yourself:

You never know what’s going to happen (take former Skyline/BYU/current Kansas quarterback Jake Heaps for example), but it looks like Max Browne’s future is bright. With Matt Barkley finishing up his senior season at USC, the starting quarterback position is up for grabs next season. Who’s to say Browne can’t step in right away and guide the Trojans in 2013? It will be fun to see what the future holds.

Have you ever seen Max Browne in action? What do you think of the quarterback’s skills? I would love to hear from you! Simply leave a message below or connect with me on Twitter, Facebook and/or Google+. Don’t forget to also check out http://allaroundtim.com for more sports coverage, including a story on a 14-year-old quarterback who recently committed to the University of Washington.

Tate Martell | 14-Year-Old Quarterback Commits To UW

Tate Martell just turned 14-years-old. He’s not even in high school yet (in fact, he’s still more than a year away), but he already knows where he’s going to play college football. The quarterback out of San Diego committed to the University of Washington today — instantly becoming the talk of the sports world in Seattle.

Tate Martell Quarterback

14-year-old quarterback Tate Martell

Martell finished up seventh grade last year, so that means he’ll be a member of the 2017 freshman class. Keep in mind, most football players commit to a university when they’re a senior in high school — some when they’re juniors (if they’re talented enough). So, this is a VERY unusual situation.

Martell and his father Al told ESPN Los Angeles they met with Washington head coach Steve Sarkisian today, and the situation just “felt right.” Tate says he and Sarkisian really see eye-to-eye (I don’t think he realizes coaches will say anything to get a recruit) and credits their “chemistry” for his decision.

“We could have done this later,” Tate said. “But, it’s a good opportunity for me right now.”

Al agreed with Tate, asking what the harm could be in committing right now — and it’s a valid question. A verbal commitment doesn’t mean much in college football. Tate didn’t sign his life away on a contract today — he just simply accepted a scholarship offer. If the coaching situation changes at Washington, Tate can go to another school if he wants to. If Tate decides he doesn’t want to play football anymore, and wants to become an astronaut — he can do that too. There’s nothing binding about a verbal commitment.

“At the end of the day,” Al said, ”Tate is still coming home with mom and dad for the next five years.”

Al added that they never planned on Tate committing to a school this early in his career; the process just came to them. I think that’s the craziest thing of all though. You can look at the parents or the kid and ask what’s wrong with them (if you have a problem with the situation), but in the end, the University of Washington offered a scholarship to a kid who’s not even old enough to drive. I’m not opposed to all of this, but I think it’s strange the system allows that.

Will Tate Martell end up at the University of Washington? No one knows (I seriously doubt it). A lot can (and will) change over the next five years. Martell could get injured, he could stop growing, etc., but that’s a gamble the Huskies were willing to take.

There’s no doubt Martell stole the college football headlines today, and that’s not an easy thing for a 14-year-old to do. The kid is obviously doing something right. Take a look at him yourself…

That video was posted on YouTube by renowned quarterback coach Steve Clarkson, who has guided Martell for the last three years (he’s only been playing tackle football for seven seasons). Clarkson made headlines in 2010 when one of his students, David Sills, committed to USC at 13-years-old. I’m sure Clarkson works with plenty of quarterbacks we’ve never heard of before, but I’d say he’s building a pretty solid track record. We’ll see if we’re saying the same thing a few years from now once Martell and Sills are actually in college.

What do you think about this situation? Are you in favor of kids committing a university at such a young age? Should schools even be allowed to offer scholarships to players that age? I would love to hear your take on this. Leave a comment below or connect with me on Twitter, Facebook, and/or Google+. You can also find more great sports coverage on http://allaroundtim.com.