URBANDALE, Iowa - Success hasn't gone to Ryan Boyle's head. The reigning Iowa Class 4A player of the year and Iowa verbal commitment showed that here Friday night against Urbandale.
The most recognizable player on top-ranked and defending state champion Dowling Catholic, Boyle threw just nine passes, completing five of them. Not all high school quarterbacks committed to play Division I football would have been so willing defer to the running game.
Boyle completed 12 of 14 passes for 283 yards and two touchdowns in November's 44-13 state title game win against Cedar Rapids Xavier. He rushed 21 times for 82 and four scores. Observers and college coaches saw how dominant he can be.
After losing big play receiver Rico Gafford (Iowa Western) after last season, Dowling appeared much more run-oriented against Urbandale. Tailback Isaiah Patton and Boyle teamed up to be a potent one-two rushing punch.
Here's my scouting report on the senior quarterback:
RYAN BOYLE EVALUATION: Having watched Boyle four times in person, I never doubt that he's in control of the offense. He's a smooth operator that exudes confidence behind center.
The 6-foot-2, 215-pounder illustrated that again on Friday. He acted as a technician, taking what the the defense gave him and producing when his number was called. His mere presence seemed to have the Urbandale defense off balance and allowed Patton and the offensive line to operate.
Boyle could be a very successful high school running back. He offers really good vision and elusiveness. He powers through tackles when needed and can take a hit.
Boyle hurt the J-Hawks with his arm as well. He's improved both his release point and quickness in getting rid of the ball over last season. He did a nice job hitting receivers in stride so they could make yards after the catch.
Dowling took only one shot down the field and Boyle overthrew his intended target. He also chucked it just long on an intermediate route that likely would have gone for a touchdown had it been completed.
The key to Boyle's success on the next level is his continued progress in throwing the football. He has down the running part of his dual-threat description.
Though the sample size was small, Boyle looked more at ease throwing the ball Friday than he did a year ago. That was a good sign.
Here's a look at Boyle's highlights from the Urbandale game: