Spartans get a "special" player in Lewerke

Phoenix (Ariz.) Pinnacle coach Dana Zupke talks about his quarterback, the latest Michigan State commit, for the player he is and the person that will come to East Lansing.

Dana Zupke first coached Brian Lewerke on a middle school flag football team and five years later, he says his junior quarterback is the best he has coached.

"There's no question," the Phoenix Pinnacle head coach said. "He's got everything. … I don't see a part where he is lacking and that's pretty special.

"You don't get too many kids like that too often."

Lewerke committed to Michigan State on Saturday after he visited East Lansing in early April. Zupke said when the offer came in and as things progressed, he felt the Spartans would be a great option for his quarterback – even though he kept his distance and let Lewerke make his decision.

"I knew Michigan State has such a good reputation for being a high-character program," he said. "That's not a knock on any other program, but I think there were two schools that very selfishly I thought were good fits for Brian. One was ASU and one was Michigan State.

"I'm not surprised in that regard at all. It tells me it had more for Brian and his family to do with other parts than just playing football."

The intangibles beyond football are the exact reason that Zupke thinks Lewerke will be successful, pointing to his character and poise.

"The inside stuff that Brian has makes him special," he said. "There is no question about his tools and his ability as a quarterback. He is a kid that is calm under pressure, a leader by example that is a genuinely good person."

While the character element fits well with the culture the Spartans have created, Lewerke fits well in on-the-field attributes as well.

The Spartans have been working at moving toward more dual-threat quarterbacks – pass first, but with the ability to run – in recent recruiting classes and Lewerke just continues that trend.

"Besides having a phenomenal, lightning fast release and being a phenomenal passer with very good mechanics, he can hurt people with his feet," Zupke said. "I think he's a dual threat more than people are giving him credit for."

It is that ability that Zupke said he believes drew the Spartans to Lewerke and had him as a top target.

"From talking to (Michigan State) coaches a bit, that mobility and the ability to move out of the pocket and throw well on the run," he said. "I think those are things they saw and are excited about."

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