March 19, 2009
Quarterback emerging in Alabama
At the recent Badger Sports 7 on 7 passing camp in Tampa, an absurd amount of talent came together to compete in a passing tournament that showcased some big arms and a lot of speed from around the southeast. With all of the big names in attendance, one prospect whose stock is yet to rise was one of the top performers.
Coty Blanchard out of Centre (Ala.) Cherokee County quarterbacked the Alabama squad in the tournament and led his team to a championship game appearance.
"It was some great competition down there," Blanchard said. "Every person we played against, it was like 'who have you been offered by or who are you committed to'. It definitely helped me, especially going through all of your progressions with only four seconds, calling out the reads in your head. We had a little 11 on 11 today with no pads on and it helped me out just going through my reads better."
While Blanchard is yet to be able to join into the 'who have you been offered by' conversation, he has received a good bit of attention and his recent success may spark even more interest.
"Right now it's Arkansas, Auburn, Alabama, Jacksonville State, Ole Miss and Mississippi State," he said. "I haven't had a chance to go to any junior days yet but we're going to some camps and stuff. I've been invited to a couple camps. I know I'm going to the Nike Elite camp at Georgia and we're going to a couple more."
The success that Blanchard had at the 7 on 7 event is not totally new to him. In 2008 he led his team to an undefeated season and all the way to the Alabama State Championship game before suffering a loss.
"Last season went great," he said. "I think we ran out of gas a little bit in state. All and all it was a good season. It was the most wins ever in Cherokee County so we're just getting a lot of hype this year. I hope we can live up to it. I hope we can do it again, playing at Legion Field. That was a storied experience."
With a target on his team's back, Blanchard is looking forward to the 2009 season.
"I don't think it's going to be a lot of pressure," he said of the new favorite status. "I just think it's going to be a more fun season just because people will know who we are and we won't be sneaking up on teams as much."
If he continues to perform like he has so far in the offseason, college recruiters may be sneaking up on Blanchard.
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