HP’s Top 33 High School Quarterbacks from the Class of 2012

Cyler Miles is HP's No. 1 QB for '12

Recruiting is the mother’s milk of college football. Simply put, you need good players combined with good plays to make a good team.

There are a lot of recruiting services out there that do admirable jobs in keeping tabs on the top prospects. It’s probably physically impossible to keep track of all of them. Keep in mind that over 2,000 student-athletes will sign letters of intent on or around February 1 and most of the recruiting services have only bothered to rank, at most, the top 250 or so. That means that fully 80 percent of the players who sign are unknown to some extent.

The problem is when you get into misevaluations of the prospects that we do know about. Unfortunately, not everyone is good at evaluating talent, or ranking them accordingly and that’s why, outside of the obvious freaks who jump out at you, mistakes are made.

No one is perfect in evaluating players, but some are better than others and that’s why HP has brought aboard famed scout Lannie Julias to help with creating our first ever ranking of high school players. Lannie is one of the legendary names in scouting and recruiting circles. A native of Los Angeles (and a Dorsey High grad), Julias has had coaching stops at Utah State (under Bruce Snyder), Southern, New Mexico and Colorado (under Chuck Fairbanks) among others. It was at Colorado where he gained the reputation as being the ‘best recruiter in college football’ according to Blue Chip Magazine. Julias also is a long-time professional scout who has been very influential in how teams evaluate talent. We’ll hear more from him before and after signing day.

Given that this is a site focused on the Heisman Trophy, we thought it appropriate that we focus on the positions that can actually win the award. And, so, we’ll be ranking the top quarterbacks, running backs and wide receivers from the 2012 class on a scale of 1 to 5. At the end, we’ll rank all 99 prospects regardless of position. Later, we’ll rank the top classes overall. I’m confident that these evaluations will be the best you’ll get anywhere on the internet.

Without further ado, HP’s top 33 high school quarterbacks from the class of 2012 are after the jump:

HP’s Top QBs from the Class of 2012

Rank Name Size Hometown (High School) College Choice Grade Comments
1 Cyler Miles 6-4, 220 Denver, CO (Mullen) Washington 4.95 A physical specimen in the Cam Newton mold. Dynamic threat with huge upside.
2 Gunner Kiel 6-4, 220 Columbus, IN (East) Notre Dame 4.90 The best pure passer in this class. Few weaknesses.
3 Jeff Lindquist 6-3, 225 Mercer Island, WA (Mercer Island) Washington 4.75 Athletically gifted dual threat who reminds us of Jake Locker.
4 Trevor Knight 6-3, 195 San Antonio, TX (Ronald Reagan) Oklahoma 4.73 Superb runner with a strong arm who doesn't make many mistakes.
5 Travis Wilson 6-6, 205 San Clemente, CA (San Clemente) Utah 4.65 Great athlete for his size. Has a 40-inch vertical to go with his big arm.
6 Matt Davis 6-2, 202 Houston, TX (Klein Forest) Texas A&M 4.60 Physically mature quarterback should play early for A&M.
7 T. J. Millweard 6-4, 230 Ft. Worth, TX (All Saints) UCLA 4.55 The only private school QB ever to make Texas FB Magazine's Elite All-State team.
8 Zach Kline 6-2, 210 Danville, CA (San Ramon Valley) California 4.50 Crafty, accurate thrower with great poise. Could be best Cal QB since Rodgers.
9 Jameis Winston 6-4, 200 Hueytown, AL (Hueytown) Florida State 4.45 Big, strong athlete who is still very raw as a thrower.
10 Trenton Norvell 6-4, 215 Daytona Beach, FL (Seabreeze) Cincinnati 4.42 Excellent mechanics and footwork and accurate down the field.
11 Nick Patti 5-11, 180 Orlando, FL (Dr. Phillips) Boise State 4.40 Little dynamo with quick feet, downfield speed and a nice arm.
12 Brent Vanderveen 6-5, 203 Arroyo Grande, CA (Arroyo Grande) Oregon State 4.35 Tall, rangy QB with zip on his passes and surprising athletic ability.
13 Lamontiez Ivy 6-3, 225 East St. Louis, IL (East St. Louis) Jackson State4.30 Well put-together QB with excellent throwing mechanics and a ton of upside.
14 Chad Kelly 6-3, 208 Buffalo, NY (St. Joseph) Clemson 4.25 Fine athlete with a knack for turning a negative play into a positive play.
15 Bart Houston 6-4, 201 Concord, CA (De La Salle) Wisconsin 4.23 Tough dual threat QB who knows how to win.
16 Anthony Alford 6-1, 205 Petal, MS (Petal) Southern Mississippi 4.20 Great athlete who was also a Jr USA Olympic outfielder.
17 Devin Fuller 6-0, 185 Old Tappan, NJ (Old Tappan) UCLA4.18 Undersized but outstanding athlete who should thrive in spread scheme.
18 Tommy Armstrong 6-2, 210 Cibolo, TX (Steele) Nebraska 4.15 Looks like one of the Nebraska I-bone QBs of old.
19 Tanner Mangum 6-3, 195 Eagle, ID (Eagle) BYU 4.12 Highly productive passer with great feel for the game.
20 Maty Mauk 6-2, 185 Kenton, OH (Kenton) Missouri 4.10 Put up incredible numbers in high school with over 120 TD passes in last 2 seasons.
21 Chad Voytik 6-1, 183 Cleveland, TN (Cleveland) Pittsburgh 4.08 A bit undersized but tough and gritty.
22 Preston Dewey 6-3, 205 Austin, TX (St. Andrews) Miami (Fla) 4.05 Has a funky delivery, but gets the job done.
23 Connor Brewer 6-2, 195 Scottsdale, AZ (Chapparal) Texas 4.00 Similar in size and skill set to Colt McCoy.
24 Wes Lunt 6-5, 210 Rochester, IL (Rochester) Oklahoma State 3.95 Tall gun slinger who should do well in OSU's scheme.
25 Tyler Cameron 6-3, 210 Jupiter, FL (Jupiter) Wake Forest 3.70 Fearless lefty who should give the ACC fits in a few years.
26 Zeke Pike 6-5, 220 Edgewood, KY (Dixie Heights) Auburn 3.65 Big QB with a big arm, but must improve decision making.
27 Tavarius Bender 6-3, 208 Lincoln, NE (Southwest) Kansas State 3.60 Strong runner, but only threw 79 times as a senior.
28 Jake Rodriguez 6-3, 210 Rocklin, CA (Whitney) Oregon 3.55 Solid athlete and sound decision maker.
29 Tyler Matthews 6-3, 205 McPherson, KS (McPherson) TCU 3.50 Hard-nosed QB with a strong arm and good touch.
30 Nathan Peterman 6-2, 205 Fruit Cove, FL (Bartram Trail) Tennessee 3.48 Quick release resulted in 36 TD passes as a senior.
31 Robert Gregory 6-3, 181 Chicago, IL (Simeon) Undecided 3.45 Superb runner, very raw as a passer.
32 Jeremiah Briscoe 6-3, 197 Houston, TX (Stratford) Undecided 3.40 Has the arm to make all the throws, but must work on mechanics.
33 Greyson Lambert 6-5, 195 Jesup, GA (Wayne County) Virginia 3.30 Lanky QB who throws a soft, catchable ball.


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About Heismanpundit

Chris Huston, A.K.A. ‘The Heisman Pundit‘, is a Heisman voter and the creator and publisher of Heismanpundit.com, a site dedicated to analysis of the Heisman Trophy and college football. Dubbed “the foremost authority on the Heisman” by Sports Illustrated, HP is regularly quoted or cited during football season in newspapers across the country. He is also a regular contributor on sports talk radio and television.

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5 Responses to HP’s Top 33 High School Quarterbacks from the Class of 2012

  1. Mark January 23, 2012 at 3:33 pm #

    Great list! Can’t wait for the others to follow.

    To preface, I’ve great respect for both you and Lannie and when Lannie speaks…I listen. However (there’s always a however) some guys I don’t agree with being ranked among the top 33. For instance, Zeke Pike; I mean he’s not even the best QB in Kentucky. No, that designation falls to Patrick Towles. Another, Connor Brewer, while accurate, lacks obvious arm strength (judging from his film). I also like Jake Rodrigues enough to justify a higher ranking. I know I’m off on a tangent, but what do you guys think about Nate Sudfeld out of Modesto (I think)? He’s got some of the best film of any QB in the class, IMO.

    In any event, great stuff guys!

    • HP January 23, 2012 at 3:39 pm #

      Thanks Mark! We’ll see how it all pans out. I think once you get to a certain point, there are a lot of variables that determine a player’s success. I do like Sudfeld and he’s probably on the edge of this ranking, still could be a very good player down the road.

      This is our first stab at ranking guys, so we hope as the years pass, we’ll have more infrastructure to expand our scouting capabilities.


  2. CowboyKS January 26, 2012 at 3:56 pm #

    HP, Great breakdown of the incoming QB’s. Did you post a ranking for the ’11 class?
    +3600 yards, +70%, 31 TD’s, 4 Ints seems like top of the class to me but you have OState’s Wes Lunt coming in at #24 behind kids with noteable flaws.

    Is Lunt discounted heavily due to playing IL 4A ball and little media attention?
    Or does he have flaws that need to be fixed?


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