Written By Nick Holmes (@HoosierHolmes)
One of the more common recruiting practices in college football is signing at least one quarterback in each class. Coaching staffs implement this strategy in hopes of ensuring that there is always a competent backup on the team. Look no further than this year’s National Champions, the Ohio State Buckeyes, as an example of where this approach paid big dividends. You know the story, despite being down to their third-string quarterback, the Buckeyes’ offense didn’t skip a beat on their way to winning the Inaugural College Football Playoff. However for the Hoosiers, things did not play out quite as well in 2014.
Through a set of unfortunate events that included injuries, transfers and not picking up a quarterback in the 2013 class, the Hoosiers found themselves relying on a signal-caller that had only been on campus a couple of months this past season.
Indiana hopes to avoid this dilemma in the future and from a recruiting perspective it appears that they should. The Hoosiers picked up two quarterbacks in the 2014 class in Zander Diamont and Chris Covington, they currently have Georgia native Austin King committed in the 2015 class and are hot on the trail of one of the nation’s top prospects in the 2016 class, Avon’s Brandon Peters.
The rising junior had an outstanding season in 2014, passing for 1,876 yards, 21 touchdowns with only six interceptions. Beyond the numbers, Peters brings a plethora of vital attributes to the position including great size, vision, good footwork, a strong and accurate arm and an ability to get through his progressions. And although he may be listed as a pocket passer, this talented athlete shows the ability to extend plays with his legs, as is demonstrated in his highlight tape.
While Peters’ has proven to be successful in the Orioles’ pro-style offense, Avon’s Head Coach Mark Bless believes his quarterback has the ability and aptitude to thrive in other offensive systems, "He's certainly capable of being in a spread," Bless said. "He's very intelligent. If he's told something one time, he retains it. But he's great at what he does for us."
Peters’ athletic prowess isn’t just limited to the football field, he puts his 6-foot 5, 205 pound frame to good use on the hardwood, scoring over 20 points and grabbing nearly six rebounds a game for the Orioles.
To lure this versatile athlete to Bloomington, the Hoosiers will need a recruiting pitch that goes beyond selling him on the idea of staying close to home, as it appears this may fall on deaf ears, "I'm just looking for a coach that can really help me improve, I'm not worried about the distance of the school," Peters said.
The four-star pro-style quarterback is ranked 5th at the position nationally and is the 3rd overall player in the state of Indiana, according to Rivals.com. In addition to Indiana, the talented gunslinger holds offers from Iowa, Boston College, and Virginia Tech. However, don’t expect a decision from Peters anytime soon, as he said in an interview last July that he would likely wait until the summer of 2015 to make his choice, "I'll probably be waiting until next summer (to decide) because it's still so early for me," Peters said.