Commentary

Heaps chooses the right school

Originally Published: June 4, 2009
By Tom Luginbill | Scouts Inc.

From a football standpoint, 2010 quarterback prospect Jake Heaps (Sammamish, Wash./Skyline High) made the smartest decision for his collegiate career by choosing to play for the Brigham Young University Cougars.

Heaps' strengths -- the ability to get rid of the ball quickly, his nice feel for anticipation and timing and his consistent accuracy -- make him an ideal fit for BYU's spread system. At the same time, the Cougars' offense won't require him to beat defenses vertically. That fact is very much of benefit to Heaps, who has moderate-to-good arm strength.

Talentwise, Heaps is capable of contributing early in Provo, Utah. Football, however, isn't the only factor that led him to pick BYU. It is very possible that Heaps will put his pigskin aspirations on the back burner to take a Mormon mission in the next few years. With that variable in play, it's hard to predict when Heaps will take the reins at BYU. Still, I would expect him to be of starting caliber and to succeed during his tenure with the Cougars program.

[+] EnlargeJake Heaps
Tom Hauck for ESPN.comCould Jake Heaps be BYU's next great signal-caller?

A commitment in the weight room will be huge for Heaps' development. He'll never be the tallest quarterback -- I expect him to top out at 6 feet or 6-1 -- so he'll need to add bulk and improve his arm strength through weight training. Heaps' lack of size is a bit of a negative, but it really shouldn't hinder his career at the collegiate level, considering he'll be in the shotgun much of the time. BYU has had tremendous success with similar guys such as Ty Detmer and Max Hall.

Losing Heaps to BYU might seem to be a bad break for new Washington coach Steve Sarkisian, as Heaps is a local kid who has said the Huskies were his favorite team growing up. But I don't think it's a negative situation for Washington. I am not so sure Washington felt he was its No. 1 guy on the board. The Huskies are hot after a couple of other blue chippers in Nick Montana (Westlake Village, Calif./Oaks Christian), who reportedly will visit UW this weekend, and Jesse Scroggins (Lakewood, Calif.).

Tom Luginbill is the national recruiting director for ESPN's Scouts Inc.