May 16, 2012

Sophomore quarterback one to watch

Sophomore Morgan Mahalak has not started his first game at the varsity level yet, but the well-rounded quarterback from Kentfield (Calif.) Marin Catholic has already started to catch the attention of colleges.

A year behind Cal commitment Jared Goff, ranked by as the nation's 21st best pro-style quarterback from the Class of 2013, Mahalak dominated at the junior varsity level last fall. Using both his arm and legs to make plays, he accounted for 30 touchdowns.

Mahalak will play on the varsity squad with Goff this fall. He is hopeful that he will get an opportunity to get quality reps behind center but said he is not "worried about" the situation.

"Jared is ranked highly and should probably be ranked higher, in the top five, he is a great guy to learn from and he is a good friend of mine so we have a good relationship," said Mahalak, who already stands 6-foot-3, 190-pounds. "Coaches have asked me, teammates have asked me and reporters have asked me about it. The situation will kind of work itself out."

Rob Johnson (starred at USC before an 10 year career in the NFL), Greg McElroy (led Alabama to a national championship in 2009) and Jeff Tuel (currently the starting quarterback at Washington State) are just a few of the quarterbacks that served as backups their junior year in high school and went on to have success at the next level.

Colleges are not able to initiate phone contact with prospects from the Class of 2014 yet, but Mahalak has received some level of early interest from Colorado, Oregon, Utah, Notre Dame, Miami and Oklahoma.

Buffaloes quarterbacks coach Rip Scherer stopped by Marin Catholic earlier this spring and watched him throw.

"I have called Coach Scherer about three times and we have started to develop a pretty good relationship," Mahalak said. "He seems to like me and we share a lot in common so it has been good. I have high interest in Colorado. My aunt and uncle live there and actually my grandparents are moving to Boulder right now. Boulder is a good place. I am going to camp there in July."

Mahalak also plans to attend camps at Notre Dame, Oregon and Nevada this summer. He has been to South Bend and Eugene numerous times in the past.

"My dad and the majority of his side of the family attended Notre Dame so that is pretty much my dream school right there," he explained. "And I have family in Eugene, so I have been a Fighting Irish and Ducks fan ever since I was a little kid. Those are two big schools for me."

Mahalak said he could see himself playing in a pro-style or spread system in college.

"A lot of high school quarterbacks are just athletic but I really think I am a good leader out there on the field," he said. "I can lead the guys and that is what I love to do, that is why I love playing quarterback. And I make good decisions. I am pretty smart with the ball."

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