Mangum weighs in

Having finished his final season of prep football, Elite 11 quarterback MVP Tanner Magnum is now using his athletic skills on the basketball court. The 2012 commit has kept a keen eye on the recent quarterback developments at BYU and wishes the best for Jake Heaps.

Eagle High School star quarterback Tanner Mangum's prep football career recently came to an end.

"Well, our season ended a couple of week ago, and we made it to the state championship," Mangum said. "Unfortunately we lost, but it was a good season and we finished 10-2. It didn't end the way we liked but it was a good season."

With his performance at various camps, Mangum has showed why he is one of the country's best.

"Last year I missed most of the season with a broken collarbone," said Mangum. "I didn't get any post-season awards, but this year I was named the Elite 11 MVP, and then at the opening at Nike I was named the top quarterback there. This season I was named the top offensive player of the year, and then I was named second-team all-state."

Now that his high school football career is over, that doesn't mean he's finished with playing prep sports; Mangum is currently playing for his school's basketball team.

"I'm kind of like a forward. I'm more of a three or four guy. I'm not as good in basketball as I am in football.

"It's just something I like to do for fun. Braiden Shaw, who actually committed to play basketball for BYU, is on my team. We're 5-0 right now and it's been a lot of fun."

In fact, one of BYU's coaches came up recently to watch one of Mangum's games.

"Coach Doman just came up here for a visit and he came up here as well during the season for a visit as well," said Mangum. "We've been keeping in touch when we can throughout the season and I'm just looking forward to signing day."

As for another accomplished quarterback recruit, Jake Heaps was the top quarterback in the 2010 class but has elected to now transfer from the Cougar program after two seasons.

"It's unfortunate and you never want to see someone leave, especially a program like BYU," Mangum said. "I think Jake is a great guy and a great quarterback, but unfortunately things didn't really go his way."

Heaps received an opportunity that not many past BYU quarterbacks got during the program's rise to quarterback development fame.

"He had an opportunity to play as a freshman and to play this year, but sometimes that's how it goes in college sports," Magnum said. "I hope he does well someplace else. I think he had the talent and he has the drive, so I wish the best somewhere else. You know, sometimes things just don't go your way."

At one time, Heaps was named an Elite 11 quarterback MVP and had many of the same accolades and on-field success that Mangum has had.

"I think it just goes to show that you can't always buy into all that recruiting hype and buy into the numbers and rankings and stuff," Mangum said. "It's more about playing the game, and playing quarterback can be a little more difficult of a position to play than others. It's tough for anyone no matter how well you played to come in and start and play at a higher level as a freshman quarterback and do well.

"I think, you know, Riley [Nelson] had some experience under his belt. I just think when it comes down to it you can't just listen to all the hype, but look at the on-field production. Unfortunately for Jake, Riley was just more productive on the field. You just never know."

While Heaps was at BYU and Mangum was going through the recruiting process, they got to meet each other.

"I've been to a lot of BYU camps and been to a lot of games, so I've gotten a chance to talk with him a little bit. When I committed I talked with him and when I went up there for a Junior Day I got to spend some time with him. You know, he's a good guy and it was sad to see him leave, but this is something you just have to roll with and hope the best for him."

Over the years, BYU has had many different types of quarterbacks come through the program. All possessed different abilities and skill sets, much like what BYU fans have seen on the field with Heaps and Nelson over the past two seasons.

These opposing styles of play have created an interesting discussions regarding what type of quarterback BYU should recruit. With that being said, how does Mangum view his style of play in comparison to Nelson and Heaps?

"Well, I think I'm a little bit in the middle," Mangum said. "I'm definitely not Riley Nelson and I'm not the quarterback who is just going to check two options and then run, lower the shoulder and lower the boom. This past season there were some plays where I looked downfield, and if there wasn't anything open I took off running and slide and get out of bounds. I'm no burner but if I have to use my feet I can do that too.

"I think my strengths are more in that I'm a pocket passer and can get the ball downfield. I think that's where my strengths are, but if duty calls I can take off and run it when I have to."

Mangum had positive things to say about BYU quarterback coach and offensive coordinator Brandon Doman.

"He's a great person, great coach and a great leader," said Mangum. "I think he's obviously a great quarterback coach and even though this was his first year of being the offensive coordinator, you could see how the offense was evolving and how he was developing as a play caller. As the season wore on he got better and better and that's what you want. You could see how the two quarterbacks began to play better and better - even though they were two different types of quarterbacks - within the offense and that's says something about him as a coach.

"You could see how the offense got better and better and ran more smoothly, and I expect that to continue as Coach Doman grows within his position. I think he's obviously a great quarterbacks coach, and at BYU it's a system where the offense runs through [the quarterbacks]. So, having him being that offensive coordinator allows him to make sure that the quarterbacks are making sure the offense is running smoothly."


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