- Gerry Hamilton, ESPN Staff Writer
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PASADENA, Calif. -- Quarterback Brett Hundley Jr. (Chandler, Ariz./Chandler High) is quickly emerging as one of the top quarterback prospects in the country with an impressive blend of size -- standing 6-foot-2 and weighing 217 pounds -- as well as agility, foot quickness, arm strength and accuracy.
"I have seven offers," Hundley said. "Texas A&M just came in two days ago, which was nice. I have Stanford, Washington, ASU, Colorado, Colorado State and Montana. Oregon, Oregon State, Notre Dame, UCLA, Michigan and Nebraska are also recruiting me. I feel like a lot are on the verge of offering."
Hundley, who won the accuracy contest during Saturday's Steve Clarkson Dreammaker event at the Rose Bowl, took an up-close look on Friday at one of the schools that has offered.
"I went to Stanford yesterday for the junior day, even though it was today [Saturday]. It was great at Stanford, Coach [Jim] Harbaugh is a great coach, I got pictures made with him, all the coaches were great and their campus was amazing," Hundley said.
Many in Arizona believe Hundley will stay in-state and follow in the footsteps of his father, Brett Hundley Sr., a former running back at Arizona.
With offers beginning to come in from around the country, Hundley is not in a rush to make a decision.
"[The Texas A&M offer] was a big one," he said. "You hear about the Stanfords and Washingtons, then when Texas A&M comes into the picture, you are like, 'Wow.' They are a big school, and I'll be sure to check them out. My eyes are open to everybody, and I'm going to take trips for a while. I've heard that most quarterbacks commit early so they can get to school early and pick up a system, but I'm not sure. I'm looking at everybody right now, and my eyes are wide-open."
A couple of key factors for the dual-threat signal-caller will be academics and finding a scheme that he can fit into with the ultimate goal of playing in the NFL in mind.
"My GPA is 3.9, so school is a major thing, and I want to be a doctor," he said. "When you look at Oregon, their spread offense is great. Also, going to a pro-style offense would be smart because it would help you get to the league. Playing under center is something to look at that would help prepare me to have a chance to play in the league."
The leader of the Chandler team passed for more than 1,500 yards and rushed for more than 1,200 as a junior.
Big decisions on the horizon for Gretzky
Trevor Gretzky (Sherman Oaks, Calif./Oaks Christian) is another in a long line of quarterback prospects who also will be a heavily recruited baseball prospect. The 6-3, 190-pound Gretzky has quick feet, impressive balance and agility and a quick release with a motion that will remind many of a catcher on the diamond more than a signal-caller on the gridiron.
"[Baseball] will be a big part of the decision-making process," Gretzky said. "I'll probably pick a school for football and see if they let me play baseball. We'll just have to see what happens."
As expected, the programs showing interest in Gretzky early on are schools with a football and baseball reputation.
"I'm receiving interest from UCLA, Arizona State and Miami," Gretzky said. "I'm going down to ASU in the next two weeks, so we'll see what happens. I've talked to a couple of other schools, but I'm just really focused on my senior year right now. I'm going to work hard over the summer, and hopefully things will come, but I'm really just focused on school."
Gretzky has sat patiently the past two seasons waiting his turn at the prestigious Oaks Christian program. The next signal-caller in line is excited about the opportunity and is receiving a lot of support from the school's strong quarterback fraternity.
"It's pretty cool, but I've just got to focus and work hard to get ready for next year because we are entering a new league, and it's going to be tough. We are going to have fun with it. I'm close to Nick [Montana]. We are pretty good friends. Jimmy [Clausen] will text me sometimes, or we'll talk on Facebook. That's pretty cool to have some of the older guys come back and check you out and keep up."
For the son of hockey legend Wayne Gretzky, the chance to lead is something the talented junior relishes.
"At quarterback, you have complete control over the game. I play catcher in baseball, and it's kind of like the same thing, because you really know what's going on. I really think I like leading teams," Gretzky said.
Growing up with a father who has been through the battles and achieved great success provides Gretzky with an opportunity to talk about sports from every angle.
"We talk sports a lot," Gretzky said. "He doesn't know that much about the game of football, but he knows sports and the business side of it. He's helped me out so much throughout the recruiting year. He really does know a lot about football, but just not the physical part. He's always helping me."
Boehm visits California
Kyle Boehm (San Jose, Calif./Archbishop Mitty) is one of the top signal-callers in the state and has picked up more than a handful of offers.
"I have six offers right now. In order they are Colorado State, San Jose State, Wyoming, Arizona State, California and Washington," Boehm said. "I'm also hearing a lot from most of the Pac-10 and Illinois [schools]. My coach told me Kansas is about to offer me. Boise State and Northwestern are two others recruiting me. There are a lot."
Boehm recently made an unofficial visit to neighboring University of California. Although he is familiar with the university, the visit still provided a chance to meet many of the coaches and players.
"I went on an unofficial to Cal a couple of weeks ago and got to meet Coach [Jeff] Tedford. I live right by Cal, so I'm pretty familiar with them, but it was fun going there and meeting with the coaches and taking a look at everything," Boehm said.
The strong-armed pocket passer is taking things slowly with the recruiting process. Having been in a different offense for three straight seasons, he feels he can play in any scheme.
"I'm pretty much open right now. I'll go anywhere to play," he said. "My school has changed our offense three times in the last three years, so I'm pretty much open to whatever offense is out there. I can see myself in the shotgun, the spread option, which is what we did this year, and anything else."
Eubank an impressive prospect
Mike Eubank (Corona, Calif./Centennial) is a physically imposing quarterback when dropping back or moving fluidly when rolling out. For the 6-6, 215-pound junior, proving that he is a quarterback is the goal.
"I'm out here [at the Dreammaker event] looking for more exposure and hoping that people can see that I can be a great quarterback," Eubank said. "I want to prove that I can play quarterback at the next level."
The two top programs in the city are showing interest. On Thursday, the talented junior took a closer look at UCLA.
"I'm being recruited heavily by UCLA and USC. I just came from a junior day at UCLA Thursday, and I'm headed to USC [later that weekend]," Eubank said. "UCLA was pretty exciting. The campus atmosphere was great and the campus was beautiful. The players were very involved talking to us and showing us around. The coaching staff was great. I got to talk to Norm Chow. He's a very laid-back guy and impressive."
Although UCLA and USC are high on the list, the Fighting Irish hold a special place in Eubank's heart.
"I'm originally from Indianapolis, so I have always loved Notre Dame. I've gotten some letters from them. They were my favorite team growing up." Eubank said.
Florida, LSU, Michigan and Fresno State are also showing interest.
• Smooth left-hander Daniel Lewis (Sacramento/Bradshaw) is receiving interest from Penn, NC State and Arizona State. UCLA is his childhood favorite, and he hopes to hear from the Bruins. The 6-4, 200-pound Lewis is patiently waiting for his first offer.
• Mitch Dahlen (Redmond, Ore.) is hearing from Oregon, Oregon State, Missouri and Washington State. He made unofficial visits to Oregon and Oregon State during the 2009 season and has plans to visit Washington State in the spring. Illinois is a school the 6-3, 195-pound signal-caller hopes to hear from.
• Strong-armed sophomore Jake Rodrigues (Whitney, Calif./Whitney) has interest in attending USC's, Oregon's and Florida's camps. USC was his favorite school growing up. The 6-3, 200-pound Rodrigues recorded 500 rushing yards and 450 passing yards in a little more than three full games. He missed a large portion of the season thanks to partially torn ankle ligaments.
• Nelson Fishback (Durham, Calif.), a 6-1, 185-pounder, will make an unofficial visit to Oregon State in May.
Gerry Hamilton has covered recruiting in Texas and the Southwest for more than a decade. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Arizona prospect Brett Hundley is quickly becoming a national recruit, writes Gerry Hamilton.