NATION'S TOP JUNIOR COLLEGE QB CONSIDERING MSU

[Premium article] The nation's top junior college quarterback is setting up a visit to Mississippi State.

Nathan Chandler is a 6-foot-7, 245-pound junior college quarterback from Pasadena (CA.)City College. Nathan was selected to J.C. Grid-Wire's pre-season 1st-team All-American team as the quarterback prior to this season. Here is my complete interview with him.

Where are you originally from?
"South Lake Carroll High School (just outside of Dallas)."

What schools recruited you out of high school?
"Mainly the Texas schools. I wound up going to Texas Tech."

Did you redshirt there your freshman year?
"Yes sir."

Didn't Texas Tech have a coaching change while you were there?
"Spike Dykes retired, then Mike Leach came in as the new coach."

What made you decide to transfer from Texas Tech?
"I stayed through the spring practice and the summer after he came in. I was hoping to be able to prove myself and wasn't seeing more reps. The guy who won the job was just one year older than me."

How did you wind up at in California at Pasadena City College?
"My dad played here. He played with Coach Maher. My dad came to practice one day and he asked if I would be willing to transfer. He continued to check my options and found out that I could play two seasons of JC and still have the opportunity to go D-I. He called Coach Maher who he knew and it took off from there."

When did your first get to Pasadena City College?
"I got here three days before their first game last year."

That would mean this season is your third semester at Pasadena City College?
"Yes sir."

Aren't you going to be a December graduate or mid-term as some call it?
"Yes sir."

Your stats have been pretty good this year. What percentage of your passes have you completed?
"We are at about 64% completion rate."

Do you know how many yards you have thrown and ran for this season?
"I can ballpark it. I believe it is about 1,970 yards passing and about 260 yards rushing."

One of the things that surprises me about your stats are your rushing yards. You are a big guy and normally big guys don't run that well. Are they slow in California or are you fast (laugh).
"(Laugh) To tell you the truth I would rather stay in the pocket (laugh)."

Do you consider yourself a drop back passer only or do you think of yourself as a pretty good runner when you need to be?
"I consider myself a pretty good scrambler, although I am a pass-first guy. If I can get ten yards (running), I am going to take them. I run about 4.6 (seconds in the forty)."

You've had a great season so far, but didn't your team lose their first game this past weekend?
"Yes sir, we are very disappointed. We were hoping to go undefeated and are now 7 and 1."

What does losing that game mean later on? Do you still have a chance to play in the California championship game?
"There is a chance. You have to be one of the top two teams in the south (of California) and there is one team (Chaffey) that is undefeated. They are number one. There is another team that is right up there with us. They lost to the same team that we lost to. It is going to come down to a vote. We feel like we have earned it because other than the game we lost, we have pretty much blown out everybody else that we have played. And we have played a very strong schedule."

When you say south I think of Mississippi. I don't think of California (laugh).
"(Laugh) I'm from Texas so it's kind of different for me also."

How big of an adjustment has it been for a Texas guy to play out in California?
"I came out here with a mission and that was to succeed and get to the next level. I have been out here working hard and haven't spent much time doing anything else. I love it out here and the people are really nice but I definitely came out here for the football."

Do you think you have succeeded in proving yourself since you have been there?
"Yes sir, I think as a quarterback you have to lead your team to victory. That is what I have been trying to do since I have been out here. It has come up good all but once."

Switching over to recruiting, I have heard different things about the schools that are looking at you. "The schools that are talking to me and the ones that I am considering very heavily are USC, Iowa, Mississippi State and Western Michigan. The questions that I have for each school is what offense do they run, what is my opportunity to get on the field and what is my opportunity to get to the next level?"

Which of those schools have offered you a scholarship?
"Iowa has offered me. Mississippi State has offered me a visit. Western Michigan has offered me."

Have you decided which schools you are going to officially visit?
"I think I am going to try and set up a visit to the Thanksgiving game (Mississippi State) plays."

When did Mississippi State start showing interest in you?
"They called me about two weeks ago. I talked to Sparky Woods. They said they want a JC quarterback and I'm the guy that they want. I was very interested because the SEC is a great conference. Two years ago they were 10-2 and last year they were 8-4 and beat Texas A&M. I watched that game. I know they have struggled this year. I want to take a visit to see what they have going on there. I know Coach Sherrill from his Texas A&M days."

Do you have a preference as to which school you would like to sign with?
"The most important thing to me is getting on the field and playing right away."


Gene Swindoll is the owner of Gene's Page (http://mississippistate.theinsiders.com), the unofficial source for Mississippi State sports on the internet. You can contact him by email at swindoll@genespage.com.


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