Rutgers hit the jackpot with it took a chance early on Johnathan Lewis. When Lewis exploded onto the scene as a Jersey City (N.J.) St. Peter's Prep senior, he was happily committed to coach Chris Ash with eyes on early playing time.
Lewis has his mind on June enrollment while Rutgers has eyes on going back-to-back in Jersey City.
Offensive coordinator Jerry Kill and co-defensive coordinator Bill Busch visited St. Peter's Prep last week. They have a new quarterback target because of it in 2019 Maasai Maynor.
“John and I are similar because we both have strong arms,” Maynor said. “John's an outstanding runner. That's a goal that I want to get to with how he runs. What I do very well, instead of just running right away, I stay in the pocket and wait for the right opportunity instead of pushing the button and going.”
Maynor worked as Lewis' understudy during the 2016 season. He leads the Marauders into 2017 as the projected full-time starter.
“I'm more than excited to finally show New Jersey what I'm made of,” he said. “From John, I learned a lot. I just saw coverages and how to read defenses and how to be a good quarterback through his perspective. He showed me the ropes.”
Rutgers was the perfect school for a scholarship offer Maynor said. From North Brunswick, N.J., Rutgers is far closer to home than St. Peter's Prep.
“The offer was more than exciting because it's been a dream for me to get a college offer at all,” Maynor said. “For it to be from Rutgers since I literally live five minutes away, it was outstanding. It was different because I was caught off-guard when I got the offer. It was a last-second thing. I was waiting to get picked up for quarterback training when coach (Rich) Hansen texted me and told me to come down to the field because coach Busch and coach Kill were there.”
“Rutgers is basically home, especially because KJ is there,” Maynor said. “That started everything. We played together my freshman year, and we created a bond. John, he's going in there and I learned a lot from him, so Rutgers is home.”
Maynor will not be under the radar for long. Pittsburgh, Boston College and Massachusetts are all set to see him throw this week.