Munford, Ala. – Even though he is flying under the radar from college coaches and recruiting services, Munford High School quarterback Monteo Garrett is one of most electrifying senior prospects in the state of Alabama.
"I have offers from Western Kentucky, Murray State, Alabama State, Georgia Southern, Middle Tennessee, Kennessaw State, and I have a couple of schools contacting me every now and then," Garrett said of the recruiting process.
"Western Kentucky is recruiting me as a wide receiver," Garrett added. "Murray State just wants the ball in my hands. Georgia Southern and Middle Tennessee want me at quarterback. When I went to Middle Tennessee (for camp) they put me at slot receiver and they said I dominated. I just want to go play football.
"I haven't been to all of my schools yet, but as it stands right now Georgia Southern and Middle Tennessee are my top choices right now," he said.
Garrett doesn't have an offer yet from a BCS conference school, so he plans on waiting until after the season to make a decision.
"We're excited," head coach Will Wagnon said of his star athlete. "A lot of people don't know him. As good of a player as he is, he's just as good of a kid. I just like coaching him because he's so fun to be around. He tries to do everything the right way, and he's a great football. I wish him the best. I really do.
"We're waiting to see," the head coach added. "All he can do is be the best on the field. We'll sit down at the end of the season and figure out what our options are and go from there."
Last Saturday he took an unofficial visit to Georgia Southern, a day after a five-touchdown performance against Munford's top rival Lincoln High School.
"It feels great (to get five TDs)," Garrett said. "Most importantly we're just happy we got the win. I just wanted to get the win. I lost to them my last two years--my sophomore and my junior year--so I had to come out with a good win my senior year. I have to give a lot of credit to the offensive line. The defense played a heck of a game so without them I couldn't do it."
It took only three plays for Garrett to become a game-changer against a defense with four-star defensive tackle prospect Jauntavius Johnson, one of the top prospect in the state for 2015.
On a 3rd and 15, Garrett took a draw play 85 yards for a score.
"He's our offense most of the time," head coach Will Wagnon said. "We've got some good guys around him, but when you have a player like that you have to set him up to make plays. Our offensive line really set him and he made the plays.
On the next series Garrett dashed 61 yards for a score on a read option.
"I had seen a little daylight and I hit it," Garrett explained. "In practice I'm told to read the end so that's my job. The end just squeezed so I pulled it at the last minute. He did a good job. I pulled it, made one cut, and you've got to do what you've got to do. I want to thank my offensive line."
Midway through the second quarter Garrett exploded for a 55-yard run, which set up his third touchdown a few plays later. On his first two touchdowns Garrett used his speed, which he said is a 4.4 but joked it might be a 4.7 in pads. On his 15-yard scramble for a score 10 of 11 Lincoln defenders had a chance at making the tackle on Garrett.
"I have great receivers..." Garrett explained. "So it's nothing against them, but I didn't see anybody open. I felt like I was getting rushed. And by the way my offensive line played a great game. To me, coach always tells me I've got a 50 percent chance of passing and a 50 percent chance of rushing. So I just took that second 50 and ran it on in there."
With the clock winding down in the first half Garrett needed his arm to lead his team for a score.
He connected on a 43-yard pass to get into Lincoln territory, then a 17-yard scoring strike.
"He's excellent," Wagnon said of Garrett's work ethic. "He's a hard worker. He has started since his freshman year. He started at running back when he was a freshman. He had a little bit of an attitude that he was a freshman staring, and that he was better than everybody else. We sat down, and we talked about it."
"He said that he wanted to get to the next level. He sat down in my office with me and said, ‘Coach, I want to be a better passer.' Because he rushed for like 1,000 yards and passed for 500 as a sophomore. We sat down and got some tapes of different quarterbacks and different quarterback coaches. He watched them and watched them, and tried to emulate that. That's what it's about. He's a kid who is really going to put into it to get it out. He's a great passer. He's as good of a passer now as he is a runner."
By halftime Garrett had already racked up 212 yards on the ground and most of his 100 passing yards. He only added 27 yards in the second half and a three-yard TD scamper as Munford cruised to a 37-12 victory.