Needless to say Texas Tech
got their man in Stephenville's Jarrett Stidham
When the four-star quarterback, rated as the No. 4 signal-caller, No. 33 player overall nationally, committed to the Red Raiders back in February, many argued he was the biggest recruit in program history. Whether he is in fact the best or top commit in Texas Tech history is debatable, but just the fact the question arose at all is telling.
Stidham checks in at just under 6-foot-4, and 190 pounds, which no doubt will be up to the 200-210 range by the fall of 2015.
His arm is unmatched by anybody else currently in Texas high school football in terms of strength, accuracy, touch and confidence. Don't take my word for it, Scout.com national recrecruiting analyst Greg Powers said it best shortly after Stidham committed.
"He's the No. 1 rated quarterback in the state for a reason," Powers said. "He's got one of the best arms that I have seen coming out of high school since Andrew Luck
down at Stratford down in Houston. It's tough to compare someone to Andrew Luck at this early stage of his development, but I do think Stidham, if things go right, is a kid who could play on Sundays at some point. "
Not only does Stidham have an NFL-caliber arm, but he is a true dual threat behind center. In fact, Stidham was a starting varsity wide receiver his sophomore season and after seeing him torch perennial state power Aledo for double-digit catches, over 100 yards and a touchdown I was convinced he was a Division I receiver right then and there.
In my years of covering high school football I have never admitted that about a receiver so young. Then I heard he played quarterback. Stidham passed for over 2,700 yards, rushed for almost 1,000 more and accounted for 46 touchdown in 2013 as a junior.
With all this hype Stidham has a lot to live up to. More importantly, Texas Tech needs him to be the real deal if he shows up in the spring of 2015 as expected as a December graduate.
Texas Tech's widely reported lack of depth behind returning Holiday MVP Davis Webb
, means Tech can't afford to swing and miss on Stidham.
The Red Raiders have also offered another blue-chip Texas quarterback in Allen's Kyler Murray
. The two-time state champ visited the campus a couple months back, has said several times how much he likes coach Kliff Kingsbury and denied reports that Stidham's commitment meant the end of interest in Tech.
All that being said, the smart money is on Murray following in his father's footsteps at Texas A&M
or perhaps heading west to Oregon
. The SEC will also be heard from before it is all said and done.
Waco-Midway quarterback Ben Hicks
is another guy who was previously on Tech's radar and he was very interested, but soon after Stidham committed he told me there was no way he would entertain a Red Raider offer. He recently committed to Houston and is still receiving other offers.
If somehow Murray picks Texas Tech I don't believe Kingsbury would turn him away and with the lack of depth at the position I'm sure they are still scouting other quarterbacks in this recruiting cycle, but Stidham is the man of the future.
"I think with Tech at least, whenever Kingsbury came down to see me, I hadn't really had that much interest, as I do obviously now, with Texas Tech," Stidham told RaiderPower.com recently. "Whenever he came down to see me it really kind of opened my eyes to Texas Tech and I really started to dig it more because the head coach coming to see you--that's a big deal. So I looked into it more and just completely fell in love with Tech. So now that I have committed to Tech recruiting has died down substantially, but I'm good with that and happy to be a Red Raider. I couldn't be more psyched."
RaiderPower.com is taking a closer look at the 2015 recruiting cycle for Texas Tech by breaking it down position-by-position. Who do the Red Raiders have committed, who are they recruiting, which prospects are interested and who are some sleepers to watch out for? First up is quarterback, where Tech landed one of the top players in the nation in Jarrett Stidham.