Michael Barrett (Lowndes/Valdosta, Ga.) is one of the most productive quarterbacks in his area, but the junior dual-threat can do more than just toss the ball around. The 5-foot-11, 208 pounder was an all-region defender at linebacker as a sophomore, while his speed and athleticism suggest he’d be able to transition to slot receiver.
In fact, Barrett’s most recent offer, from Maryland Jan. 12, came in for a slot role.
“Coach [Walt] Bell talked to my head coach., and [Bell] told him my coach he wanted to offer me as an athlete. My coach didn’t say too much, but he let me know the Terps like me as a skill player in the their offense and think I can do big things,” Barrett said. “So I was happy to hear that. It was a big offer for me. It was my first Big Ten offer. Hopefully this is the start of something real big for me.”
Barrett hasn’t spoken to Bell yet but plans to do so shortly. The Lowndes product said Bell should be trekking through his high school soon too.
“I’m looking forward to meeting him,” Barrett said. “I honestly don’t know too much about Maryland yet, other than it’s in the Big Ten, so I want to learn more and build a relationship with [Bell]. I definitely would like to visit at some point too.”
Before Bell came through with the offer, Barrett held looks from East Carolina, Georgia Tech and Georgia Southern. The latter two offered Barrett at quarterback, while ECU wants him as an athlete.
“Honestly, I’m not really set on one position. I can play anything anyone wants me to play. I can play quarterback, receiver, linebacker, wherever,” Barrett said. “I just want to go to a place where I have the best opportunity to play.”
So far, Barrett has been able to visit nearby Georgia and Florida. He’ll take his first trip this offseason to Georgia Tech Jan. 29 for the Jackets’ junior day.
“Florida and Georgia were both nice schools. I really liked Florida; they have a great program. And Georgia is the hometown school and I liked that a good deal too,” Barrett said. “But I’m not hell-bent on one conference or location. I want to go to a place that’s going to best develop me and where they want me. I can play wherever.”
Next up, Barrett will check out Ga Tech and then wants to hit East Carolina, head back to Florida and maybe trek north to Maryland. He’ll also consider visiting any other schools that choose to ante up this offseason.
“Florida has always been a dream of my mine,” said Barrett, who mentioned he hasn’t heard from many college coaches yet besides those that have offered him. “I’ve grown up going to their games and watching them. So that’s an offer I’ve always wanted. But we’ll see how things go. I’m open to any options.”
Barrett is coming off a season where he passed for 2,759 yards, rushed for over 1,227 yards and totaled 48 touchdowns (27 passing, 21 rushing).
“Leadership is big for me. That’s something I take pride in,” Barrett said. “But I’m a game-changer at quarterback and can do a lot out there on the field to make a difference. And I can play defense too, and consider myself a pretty good linebacker.”