BYU in Hunt for National Top 5 QB?

There's more to southern Utah than old western homesteads and the famous red sandstone cliffs of Zion's National Park; there is also a decent athlete or two to be found. One such prospect is a record breaking quarterback from Pine View High School.

James Lark seems a promising candidate for the prestigious EA SPORTS Elite 11 quarterbacks list. BYU has acknowledged Lark's potential with an early scholarship offer for the talented quarterback from St. George.

"[BYU] offered me two weeks ago," said Lark. "I don't know who called my coach, but Bronco Mendenhall sent me a letter. It was just saying that they offered me a scholarship, saying that I'm the kind of player they want in their program and stuff. It's nice. My coach also said that Utah has offered me but I haven't talked to them yet. That's it right now."

Lark used a laid back approach and a great supporting cast to put up record setting numbers during his junior season. "I just played the game and had fun and things just worked out," said the First Team All-State signal caller. "I set a state record for touchdowns by throwing 41. We were really spread out and had 5 receivers in the top 10. Our main receiver is probably Carson Seegmiller. He's probably around 6'0" and just a solid kid at around 200 pounds and the fastest kid on our team. He's just really quick and fast and never went down on the first tackle. Carson's a great player. He really helped me out with my stats too. I just like to play and have fun. I'm just trying to stay humble right now and just play and have fun."

Lark set a Utah state record of 41 touchdowns and only 5 interceptions. His high school coach said Lark scored 43 touchdowns on the season, including two on the ground.

"I probably ran the ball around 75 times this year," said Lark. "We ran about 50/50 and when we'd run the ball we didn't really spread out much. It was just a regular offense. I had 75 carries for like around 750 or 780 yards.

"I was talking to my coach the other day and he said I was just under 4,000 yards [passing] on the season. It was over 300 [yards] a game."

As a sophomore Lark manned the free safety position where he snagged 11 interceptions on the season before making the move to full time offense. Lark also averages 11 points a game for Pine View's basketball team. He hinted at the fact that he can dunk a basketball and has an outstanding vertical leap that was measured at 33 inches during the USC camp last year.

While attending the camp at USC Lark had a chance to speak with former BYU offensive coordinator Norm Chow. "We just talked about football but he had more to say to my coaches than me," said Lark. "It was in the newspaper. He said in my senior year I'll probably be a top five recruit for quarterbacks nationwide. I just try to let things happen. I don't really think about it or talk about it that much, but it was a nice thing to hear."

As a young kid, Lark followed BYU's football program with his family and friends growing up in Michigan. Now in Utah, Lark has had a chance to follow BYU more closely and even attended a few games this past season.

"I went to a few this year. I went to the USC and the Wyoming games," Lark said. "Yeah I followed [BYU] with my family and with friends. I just moved here two years ago. I moved here my freshman year with my family because we have more relatives out here. It's been really nice."

One former BYU player Lark followed closely was former BYU quarterback Brandon Doman.

"I remember Brandon Doman who played at BYU," said Lark. "He's someone I really look at myself as being like because he could run the ball really well and that's something I really enjoy doing."

Said Lark, "He's a guy I compare myself to, and I'm thinking if I could learn from a guy like that it would be a lot easier and I would really enjoy doing that"

Lark has yet to have a chance to meet or speak with BYU coaches as of yet. However, even though he's never met new offensive coach Robert Anae in person, Lark is excited about the fact Coach Anae is bringing the old BYU offense back to Provo. Lark caught a glimpse of what's in store for BYU from when Tezas Tech's Sonny Cumbie torched the fourth ranked Cal defense, completing 40-of-60 passes for 521 yards and three touchdowns in the 2004 Holiday Bowl.

"I don't know who [Anae] is but my coach has talked to him," said Lark. "I've never talked to him or met with him or anything, but yeah I watched some of that [Holiday Bowl]. That's would be a great opportunity to play for an offense like that. That's just what a quarterback wants."

With a current 3.97 GPA, Lark has thought about possibly studying physical therapy or even medicine. "I haven't put too much thought into it but I'm looking to go into the medical field," said Lark. "Maybe a physical therapist or something with sports medicine, I'm looking into that kind of stuff."

However, prior to earning a degree or even the starting quarterback job, Lark has plans to serve a full time LDS mission. "That's something I really want to do," Lark affirmed.

Lark is being recruited by the likes of BYU, USC, UCLA, Arizona, Arizona State and Utah and he plans on attending a few football camps to help him with his college choice. One of those camps will BYU's.

"I just talk to my coach [Hosner] and we haven't put up my schedule together yet because I've been really busy with basketball," Lark explained. "I'm going to the BYU camp for sure and maybe I'm going up to Oregon. I might go to some other camps and I might go to a Nike training camp. I got invited to a Nike training camp so I might go to that."

One camp Lark would undoubtedly like to attend is the Elite 11 Quarterback Camp.

"If I got invited to [Elite 11] I would take up that opportunity for sure!" Lark declared.

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