Friday, April 6, 2012
Updated: April 7, 11:10 AM ET
Ryan Buchanan has coaches talking
By Jamie Newberg
Jackson (Miss.) Prep Ryan Buchanan is a rising star at QB and helped lead the basketball team to a 28-1 record and its first state championship in 14 years.
His coaches think he's too good to be true. Well, almost.
"Ryan does everything you ask. As his coach, this kid does everything you ask. He has this willingness to put the team's needs over his," said basketball coach David Corner. "The only complaint I have ever with him is when he forgets his keys or jersey. "
When he remembers everything, Buchanan, 6-foot-4 and 205-pounds, just seems to make it look easy.
"Ryan has all the mental and physical attributes that you look for in a quarterback," football coach Ricky Black said. "He throws the ball so well and the ball really gets out of his hand. He can also run so well. He has tremendous footwork. The thing with Ryan is that for him, playing this position, it's effortless for him. He's a natural."
Well, kind of. Buchanan still puts the hours in watching film and doing the things needed to grow as a quarterback.
"I think the biggest thing for me is my mental toughness," Buchanan said. "I have that ''Will to' if you know what I mean. I play this game and love this game and believe I have a certain character that is needed for this position. It's not anything you can measure or see by watching me throw.
"As far as throwing my biggest strength is my release. I have a quick release and very good footwork. That is something I have worked hard at. I know I have to keep at it. I have to keep studying film and learning how to read defenses better. Of course, I would love to be able to run a little better and break off some longer runs when needed."
An added plus, though it might sound strange, is in the offense he plays in where he's under center the majority of the time. Many programs use predominantly shotgun.
"We do a little bit of shotgun and he's under center. So I really believe that will really help him," Black said. "I know a lot of schools were impressed that he feels comfortable with both. I believe any quarterback needs that kind of exposure. He quite adept at both and that will give him a big advantage."
Schools have noticed and the scholarship offers are starting to come in.
"Syracuse was my first offer," Buchanan said. "There isn't any connection there. It just came out of nowhere. They saw my film and liked it. I was very surprised."
Since the Orange offer, Mississippi State, Ole Miss, Auburn and Southern Miss also extended their offers. The Tigers and Eagles both came within the last week.
"Auburn offered me on Saturday night," Buchanan said. "I just took an unofficial visit there. I watched them practice and had a good time. I got to watch some film with the coaches. Then Southern Miss offered me on Monday afternoon."
This weekend Buchanan plans on seeing the Razorbacks and plans on seeing other SEC schools as well.
"Of all the teams I am probably talking with [Arkansas] the most," Buchanan said. "I know Alabama, Florida and Tennessee are three other schools that I want to see."
Buchanan is saying he could decide by the end of the summer, but isn't putting anything in stone.
"When it happens it happens," Buchanan said. "I would like to make a strong decision before the start of two-a-days, at the latest. I do not want to deal with recruiting this fall."
Buchanan gave up baseball to concentrate on football. Now he just has to find the right college fit.
"I have interest in all the schools," Buchanan said. "Right now I am just taking it all in and looking at every angle. Getting to know the quarterback coaches is big for me. That's the guy I will be spending all my time with. I also want to find a good scheme and feel comfortable outside of football."