- Scott Powers, ESPN Staff Writer
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As a senior in high school, 6-foot-2 quarterback Juice Williams couldn't be contained. He burned opponents weekly with his arm and feet and racked up thousands of yards and dozens of touchdowns for Chicago Vocational. Today, he is the starting quarterback for Illinois.
Miles Osei, another 6-foot-2 quarterback, is now close to following in those same footsteps. Already, he's putting together a monstrous senior season for Prospect. Through four games, he's compiled 968 yards and 10 touchdowns in the air and another 455 yards and six touchdowns on the ground. And just like Williams, Osei is starting to hear from the Illini.
"That would be awesome if I could get an offer from them," Osei said. "Their interest seems high. They want to get some more game tape, and hopefully in the next couple of weeks they can come through."
Osei will surely be sending them footage of his latest performance, one which earned him ESPNChicago.com's Prep Athlete of the Week.
With Barrington sensing an upset at unbeaten Prospect on Thursday, Osei emerged and made sure that didn't occur. He rallied the Knights back from a 14-point deficit, throwing three touchdowns, rushing for three more and ending it with a game-winning pass in the fourth quarter for Prospect to prevail 39-37 in the Mid-Suburban League matchup.
Through it all, Osei never showed any signs of urgency.
"I think his presence is calming to our kids," Prospect coach Brent Pearlman said. "You'll never see him panic.
"I think his biggest asset is he's a winner. When he walks on the field, he feels like he's going to get the job done. That poise and confidence carries over to everybody."
Osei wasn't always calm and cool in the big games. He used to get overwhelmed by the emotions and the atmosphere in similar contests throughout his sophomore year, and for part of his junior season. Then, he developed a different way of looking at them.
"When it's a pressure situation, I look at it from a spectator's point of view," Osei said. "I think that helps."
It also helps that Osei can hit teammates for bombs like he did with wide receiver Peter Bonahoom for a 59-yard score against Barrington, or scamper for long gains as he did with a 17-yard touchdown run against Barrington.
Because Osei is athletic and can take off from the pocket, Pearlman believes people stereotype him as a running quarterback.
"That couldn't be further from the truth," Pearlman said. "He throws as well as anybody.
"When you hear dual-threat quarterback, I think he's the epitome of a dual-threat quarterback. I think if someone wants him to sit in the pocket and throw, he could. If you wanted him to run more, he could. I think he could do both."
Personally, Osei doesn't care. He'll do whatever Prospect needs him to do. While he is putting up numbers worthy of player of the year honors, Osei's mind is set on one thing.
"To be honest, I didn't have one individual goal for myself this year," said Osei, who is also being recruited by Central Michigan, Columbia, North Dakota State and Northern Illinois. "My goal is to get to Game 14 and win Game 14. I couldn't tell you how many yards and touchdowns I have."
It sounds exactly like something someone else said earlier this year.
"Win, win, win. I try not to set individual goals. My priority is to win. We had some good moments the last couple years. But obviously, this is my last year, and I want to go out there and get a W. I'm gonna to attack each game like it's my last and see what happens at the end."
Yep, that was Juice Williams talking.
Scott Powers covers high school and college sports for ESPNChicago.com and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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