This week’s scouting location was switched around a couple of times, resulting in a decision to eventually head up to Reidsville, NC, the self-proclaimed football capital of North Carolina. That’s where 2020 3✮ ATH Jefferson Boaz faced the toughest test of his senior season as he and the East Surry Cardinals faced the defending 2A state champion Reidsville Rams. Let’s take a look at how the son of former Tar Heel punter Jay Boaz performed on Friday night.
When the Tar Heel legacy originally committed to Carolina back in June, many wonder where the lengthy athlete would end up when he arrived to campus next year. While 247Sports lists Boaz as a tight end, he is off to a phenomenal start to his senior season at quarterback, as he entered the game completing 74.7% of his passes for 1,360 yards and a 21-2 TD-INT ratio. He picked up right where he left off on Friday night, as he completed 26 of his 35 passes for 477 yards and total seven touchdowns in one of the most thrilling games in East Surry school history. Boaz has a cannon for an arm and has nice touch on his deep ball, something he was able to display quite often on Friday night. Boaz’s placement isn’t just strong on deep throws, though. His ability to lead receivers allows his talented receiver to do what they do best in the open field and that results in big plays, something that college offenses love. Boaz didn’t use his legs often, but looked solid on the move when he did. He did take a few too many unnecessary risks and if he is to remain at quarterback when he gets to the college level, he’ll have to eliminate some of those mistakes. Boaz has the confidence to make every throw, though, and he can drill the ball into tight coverage, another attribute he showed off quite a few times. With the rumors about Jacolby Criswell’s commitment beginning to waiver, whether they are true or not, this performance and his start to the 2019 season should give Tar Heel fans confidence that they will have a quarterback committed to the class if he does decommit.
At 6’8, 230 lbs., Boaz is a different kind of athlete who possibilities are endless. He shined during the Tar Heel offseason camps at both tight end and linebacker, so the athleticism is there. His 46.0 average on his two punts could allow the Tar Heels to use him a punter, as well, but that seems like the least likely scenario unless something major happens at the position. Don’t count him out to be in the Tar Heels quarterback room in 2020, though, because he definitely has the arm talent.
Boaz’s favorite target all night was NC State commit Stephen Gosnell, who looks as good as any receiver I’ve seen this year outside of maybe Myers Park’s Muhsin Muhammad. Gosnell caught three of Boaz’s five touchdown passes, all of which were 25+ yard catches. NC State has themselves a good one. Meanwhile, the other FBS prospect on the East Surry roster, 2021 3✮ DT Isaac Washington made a few nice stops in the backfield, but like the rest of the East Surry defense, had his struggles as well. One name that deserves mentioning is Landon Stevens, who hauled in the other two touchdowns of the night, both coming in the fourth quarter.
For Reidsville, the big name that we were keeping an eye on going in was 2021 4✮ WR Breon Pass, but he had a relatively quiet night outside of an impressive leaping catch for Reidsville’s first touchdown. Quarterback Kyle Pinnix was the star, matching Boaz drive for drive until late in the fourth quarter. Pinnix showed impressive arm strength and touch, which made for a very interesting shootout between these in-state powerhouses.
The Heel Tough Blog will take another lengthy trip next Friday when they head east to the Fayetteville area to see 2020 3✮ RB commit D.J. Jones and Pine Forest take on Westover High School.