The state of Georgia is blessed with some super signal callers this season - A.J. Bryant (Georgia commitment), Alex Mortensen, Calvin Booker, and Cullen Harper. One other quarterback to keep a serious eye on is D.T. McDowell from Tucker, Georgia. After this season, look for his recruiting stock to sky rocket.
On film, he is very impressive, showing great play making ability with his strong arm and running ability. McDowell also happens to be one of the country's top baseball prospects.
"I love both football and baseball," McDowell said. "I would love to play both sports in college. But I need to see what happens in June (2004). I will keep all of my options open."
McDowell is a pitcher and center fielder. He has recently been clocked throwing a 94 mile per hour fastball. Last season, he was 10-1 with a 1.07 ERA and he hit .427 with nine home runs.
This summer, he has been playing baseball with the Knoxville Yardbirds. They have traveled to Florida, Nebraska, Missouri and even Australia to play.
Last season as the quarterback for Tucker, McDowell passed for 1,550 yards and 14 touchdowns. He also rushed for 13 scores. He can do it all.
"I have the ability to throw and I have a very strong arm. I can run too. I just like to go out there and make plays. We opened up the offense last season and I worked very hard."
McDowell also has the luxury to hand the ball off to the state's top running back and one of the top prospects in the country in Thomas Brown. The two are very close.
"He is like my best friend. It takes a load off me to have him back there. He has my back and I have his. If they stop me I just give it to my boy."
This summer, McDowell has visited both Auburn and Nebraska. He camped with the Tigers and came away impressed. While he was playing baseball in Nebraska, he stopped to see the Cornhuskers.
"Auburn was a great camp. I did very well there. I saw their facilities, stadium and met with Coach (Tommy) Tuberville. He seems like a very interesting person.
“Nebraska was real cool. I got to throw the ball with Turner Gill. I thought he was just an ordinary coach... I said ‘Turner who?’ And people started telling me what a great player he was at Nebraska. That was humbling.
“But Nebraska was great. I also hit coach (Frank) Solich running a post pattern right in his hands. He just took off running. He said that was my first TD pass in Memorial Stadium. I told him it wouldn't be my last.
“Coach Solich and I are a lot alike. We both like to joke around but we are both very serious too.”
Currently, Nebraska and Auburn are his two favorites. McDowell also is looking at Georgia, Mississippi State, Clemson and Florida State. If there is one team to watch out for, it’s the Georgia Bulldogs. He will attend their one day camp later this month.
“I have been to Georgia and it’s nice there. But I have not yet met coach (Mark) Richt. I hope to see him at the senior camp. I know they want to see me in person. I need to show them D.T. McDowell. I have to earn their respect and the respect of this state. There is always a lot of talent and some good quarterbacks this season but I know I can compete against anyone. Like I said, I have to go out and earn it. Georgia is no different. I am not scared on competing there. In fact, I wouldn’t mind putting on the red and black. They were my childhood dream team.”
So McDowell, like some other two-sport stars on the past, will have two tough decisions to make in the next 11 months. For now, he is just getting ready for his senior year and we know one decision will be made on Signing Day in 2004.
“I know I will be going somewhere for four years or so, so I want to be comfortable wherever I choose. Distance doesn’t matter but the coaching staff does. They have to interact well and get along with the players. Offensive scheme will be important to because I want to have the ability to run the ball.
“Right now, it’s Nebraska or Auburn. They are my leaders.”
In addition to be a star on the diamond and gridiron, McDowell isn’t bad on the links as well. He shoots in the low to mid 80s. He will also camp at LSU later this month.