Sophomore QB/TE/DE Turns Heads

Gerald Hill played back up quarterback, starting tight end and starting defensive end as a sophomore on his high school's varsity football. Heading into his junior season, the multi-talented athlete from Tacoma, Washington is definitely one to watch.

Gerald Hill played back up quarterback, starting tight end and starting defensive end as a sophomore on his high school's varsity football. Heading into his junior season, the multi-talented athlere is definitely one to watch.

"I'm 6-4 and I weigh 225," said Hill. "My sophomore year I was a second string quarter and I started out at tight end because we had this senior quarterback who was pretty good named Jordan Rasmussen. He's going to Montana State on a full ride this year, so I just backed him up the whole year and got in for a couple of games.

"I had a like five touchdowns and made a lot of big plays on third downs and stuff like that. I was named first team all-league. I got that as a tight end, and that's pretty much all I got for football. I don't really like blocking but I did it. I was more of a receiving tight end. I got three touchdowns as a sophomore tight end and I picked one up after one of our receivers fumbled it and ran it in for another touchdown. I think I had around 400 yards on around 20 to 25 catches."

Half way through the season, Hill started taking reps at defensive end. He had two of sacks and several tackles for a loss. He also batted down a number of passes.

This fall, Curtis High School coaches want Hill to take over the starting quarterback position while also starting on defense. Hill will play either outside linebacker or safety.

"Next year I'll start at quarterback," Hill said. "I've got pretty good arm strength and I can throw pretty hard. I can get people pretty mad when they catch it. I jammed his one kid's fingers a couple of weeks ago at a football camp. I dislocated them and he had to have them popped back in. I can throw a football about 65 to 70 miles an hour.

"I'll also be starting on defense. I'm somewhat versatile I guess. I'm somewhat fast and I can get it moving. I like to hit. I like to run through people. I don't like to shake that much, but I really like to hit. I run pretty well but we didn't do any of the bench press stuff. I did do my vertical though. I got a 30-inch vertical, and I can dunk a basketball."

Hill attended BYU's summer football camp this week. Cougar quarterbacks coach Brandon Doman spent some one on one time with the young signal caller.

"Things are going pretty good for me so far," said Hill. "I went to BYU's summer camp and it was a lot of fun. I learned a lot from Coach Doman when I was there. He helped me with my drop back while I was there and with reading defenses and with my release.

"I like the coaches at BYU. I've spoken to them when I've gone down there, and I like Coach Reynolds. Coach Mendenhall—he's a cool guy too. I didn't get a chance to really talk to him all that much, but when I did he just seemed like a really good guy—down to earth. I really like Coach Doman too, and we talked for the little time I was down there. I like him because he's a personal kind of guy."

While at BYU, Hill spent time visiting the campus. He was impressed by the dorms as well as the athletic facilities.

"I had a chance to play a couple of seven-on-seven games in the IPF," said Hill. "It's really nice with the indoor turf, and it gave us a chance to get out of the sun. Provo is a really nice area. I didn't get a chance to see the stadium this, but I've seen it before. It's really nice."

Hill who is both LDS and African American currently has mission plans in his future, which is one reason why BYU is one favorite schools. Interestingly, football was not the sport that initially brought the Cougars calling.

"BYU first started looking at me for basketball," said Hill. "I went down there and talked to the coaches too about that. I talked to Coach Rose and Coach Wardenburg, and they're really good guys. They were talking to me about coming down here and playing. I talked to them during last fall and they said that I could possibly be the first guy to come in and play both basketball and football in a couple of years. I think that would be hard, but I would give it a shot to see how it is. BYU is one of my top schools right now."

Hill could play a number of positions at the college level, so BYU coaches have not told him exactly where he would end up on the roster. A lot of the decision will depend on how Hill's next two seasons work out.

"I think that would be great to play quarterback there," said Hill. "I've kind of picked up that BYU is serious about me playing up there. I haven't really started at quarterback yet, so they want to see how I do after this year. They want me to send them some highlight film after the season. They can't recruit me until my junior year."

When Hill becomes a junior and is recruitable athlete, BYU will not be the only school knocking at his door. He has already heard from several Pac-10 schools.

"I've been getting a couple of letters from Oregon and the University of Washington," Hill said. "I've been getting letters from Eastern Washington but that's mostly for basketball. My coach is really close with Wazzu [Washington State,] so they've been sending me stuff too. That's about it for football."

"If BYU gives me an offer after my junior year, they'll be my top choice," said Hill. "I'm an LDS kid and BYU has the atmosphere, and I can go on a mission if I want to and all that stuff. I have family that lives up there in Utah and my mom and dad are thinking about moving up there. Right now I have my grandma, my grandpa and my aunt that lives up there in Salt Lake City. If we move it will probably be up in the Salt Lake area to be closer to my family there. My mom wants to move up there now but she doesn't want to move while I'm in high school."

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