Bearcats quarterbacks competing for job, special teams practicing hard

Published 3:44 pm Friday, July 27, 2018

Three quarterbacks are vying for the starting job under center this season at Bainbridge.

“We are really young and green,” said offensive coordinator Mike Harville. “It’s a process, and hopefully we can get them rolling and accomplish some big things this year.”

Junior Jackson Wheeler, sophomore Quayde Hawkins and freshman Deyon Bouie each have their own strengths, and each have weaknesses they are working hard to improve on.

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“Jackson is tall and has a really strong arm,” said Harville. “He can throw a football downfield with some accuracy and some decision making. Quayde has got good feet and a quick release. He makes quick decisions, but he just has got to be more accurate. Deyon is an exceptional ath-lete that can make things happen with his feet.”

Bouie made big plays for the eighth grade Bearcats last season. The transition to high school has coach Harville working with him closely so he can better understand the mentality, and pressures, of being a high school quarterback.

“It’s a huge transition coming from the eighth grade to high school,” said Harville. “He’s realizing that there is so much more of it mentally that you have to do, and the process. He’s a cornerback on defense, too. He’s definitely going to be a player to watch this year.”

Hawkins has hit a major growth spurt since his freshman season, and Harville is excited to see how that has helped him grasp the position better than ever. Harville did say he wants Hawkins to keep getting stronger, but the difference in confidence from last season to this season is huge for him.

Wheeler has the most experience under center for the varsity Bearcats, and Harville said he has been playing really well the past few practices.

This season, Harville wants to open up the offense. Bainbridge has always been a heavy run-first team, but might mix in a little more passing with a rotation of solid wide receivers led by seniors.

“Coach Littleton and myself and all of our staff, we are working on our game,” said Harville. “We’ll see what they can do best when it’s time to tee it up, and hopefully give them an oppor-tunity to be successful.”

On special teams, Caleb Harris will continue putting boot to leather as kicker and punter for the Bearcats. Bowen Dodson will return to long snap, and Caleb McDowell and Rashad Broadnax are getting the majority of reps on punt returns.

“We should be better because it’s the same people,” said special teams coach Tom Wheeler. “Most of the components are the same. We should be better.”

Fans will have a chance to see Bainbridge’s players in action next Friday for fan day, an inter-squad scrimmage at Centennial Field. Kickoff is at 5 p.m.