On A Lot Of Radars

Conner Wood referred to his introduction to varsity football in Texas, as an opportunity and a whirlwind.

Now it seems like such a long time ago.

Before Conner Wood even walked the halls as a freshman at Second Baptist School in Houston, he won the starting quarterback job during fall camp. Only a couple years before that, the class-of-2010 signal-caller was watching his brother Jeff Wood lead the Eagle offense before taking his game to Texas A&M.

"It was a whirlwind at first, the first couple games," the 6-foot-4, 200-pound Wood said. "Obviously the more experience and practice you get in the game, the better off you're going to be.

"I was kind of thrown into the fire a little bit. Our first game was against our arch rival, and I thought I did okay. Our team lost that game, but I think I definitely learned a whole lot coming from my freshman season to my sophomore. Our team as a whole has made great strides coming from my freshman year."

As a rookie starter, Wood threw for 1,300 yards, 10 touchdowns and nine interceptions, as Second Baptist struggled to a 4-6 record.

But what a difference a year makes. Last fall, Wood threw for 2,200 yards and 23 touchdowns to just seven interceptions. The Eagles went from not making the playoffs the season before, to advancing to the TAPPS class 5-A regional championship game.

"I thought we did excellent," Wood stated. "Definitely a huge stride from my freshman season.

"We got a new coaching staff and new offense, we went to the spread actually. The coaches did a great job of using everyone's ability, knowing what they can and can't do. The sky is the limit this year in terms of our season and what we should accomplish. We have 18 or 19 returning starters. That definitely gives incentive to win a state championship, and that's what everyone is expecting at Second Baptist. We're all excited and pumped up."

Wood is also excited and pumped up about another opportunity that will soon turn into a whirlwind.

Recruiting.

Though no college has yet to say we're going to be sending a written scholarship offer on Sept. 1st, the first day the NCAA allows programs to offer high school juniors, Wood is hearing from most of the nation's top programs.

Wood lists Texas, Texas A&M, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Oklahoma, Iowa, Kansas, Kansas State, Clemson, UCLA and Michigan State as a few of the many programs that have already inquired about him.

"I think every college has a unique thing they have that stands out about them," Wood said. "All the schools are elite schools in the nation, and I'm blessed to have these schools give me a look."

Notre Dame invited Wood to its camp, but he couldn't make it up. The Irish program is one Wood hopes to hear more from.

"Very, very much so," Wood stated. "They have had one of the best recruiting classes the last couple years. They're definitely on the rise.

"Coach (Charlie) Weis, that's top of the line coaching over there. Wow! Shoot!

"Notre Dame is such a historical school, and their rich tradition in football is always a big draw for any player. I've grown up and watched Rudy and stuff like that, and it has the rich history of football."

Wood did make it to camps at Georgia, Oklahoma, Texas, LSU, Texas A&M, and to a local one Baylor hosted.

"I've gotten familiar with Texas A&M because my brother and sister go there, and my brother plays football there. I am more comfortable with College Station than any place, but I liked all the places I saw this summer. I feel like I can fit in anywhere. I felt comfortable in that college setting. I just can't say anything more about those colleges. They were so welcoming and nice to me when I was there. I haven't met nicer coaches than the ones I met this summer."

"When I was at LSU, I got some compliments on my footwork and my drop back. They said they like that a lot. My delivery, they said they were pretty impressed with that."

Wood hopes to take unofficial visits to Texas, Oklahoma, LSU, Georgia and of course Texas A&M this fall for games.

Wood's brother Jeff joined the Aggies as a quarterback, but made the move to receiver this season.

"When you go to Texas A&M or an elite college like that, they get you smart about the game and he passed on a whole bunch of information to me. A lot of tips and the stuff I learned, is from him. The basic stuff when I was little, I learned a lot of that from him. He is the best person I've learned football from growing up."

Thanks big bro. Wood is now ready for the whirlwind any opportunity presents the final two years of his prep career.


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