Zach Gentry looking the part

Stability is something every program yearns for at the quarterback position.

It’s something the Longhorns have lacked for several seasons but that could be changing with Tyrone Swoopes, however silly that sounds seeing as though he’s 0-2 as a starter.

While Swoopes and Jerrod Heard continue their efforts of maturing under the watchful eye of Shawn Watson, 2015 commitment Zach Gentry is doing what he can to make sure he’s best prepared for when he joins the program next season.

So far in 2014, Gentry has done nothing but impress on his way to leading Albuquerque El Dorado to a 4-0 start with wins of 42-0, 41-7, 45-7 and 35-6.

In the Eagles’ latest victory over Volcano Vista, Gentry completed 19 of 26 passes for 246 yards and four touchdowns while also running for another.

His one small hiccup came with 4:42 left in the game when he threw a pick-6 for Volcano Vista’s only score.

Gentry, the No. 17 quarterback and No. 266 player overall, now has 13 touchdown passes and two interceptions on the year.

“Well the three teams that we’ve played haven’t been very good so he hasn’t played a whole game yet,” El Dorado coach Charlie Dotson told HornsDigest on Wednesday. “His stats don’t reflect him. I’ve pulled him early in all three games. In the second game I pulled him in the middle of the third quarter.

This past week’s game was the first time that Gentry was asked to play all four quarters.

Gentry and El Dorado will have their hands full this week as they face a Mayfield team (4-0) with an impressive dual-threat quarterback in Kavika Johnson. On paper, it is the best quarterback matchup the state of New Mexico will likely see all season.

“We will play the top team in the state in Mayfield so we’ll get a better feel for how he’s playing,” Dotson said. “But this is what we thought would happen. He’s throwing the ball well.”

Gentry (6-foot-6, 232 pounds) committed to Texas on May 12 after coming to the conclusion that he wanted to take a chance on a program whose coaching staff was the first staff from a major school [Louisville] to take a chance on him.

He chose the Longhorns over Alabama, Tennessee, and Oklahoma State. But he also had offers from Baylor, Penn State, Maryland, Nebraska, Northwestern, Oregon State, San Diego State, and TCU.

Gentry was the center of attention when he came down for Texas “Under the Lights” camp over the summer, and has continued to shine so far during his senior season.

“You hate to say it but he’s bigger, faster and stronger,” Dotson said. “We still need to continue to get him in the weight room. He needs to get stronger. That needs to happen. We continue to work on his film study and stuff like that but he’s got all the physical tools. He’s got everything.”

His ability to elude defenders in the pocket is something that shined during a broken play that Dotson called the “worst football play in my seven years as a coach.”

“Everybody went the wrong way, the running back went the wrong way,” Dotson said. “He scrambled and threw on the run for about 50 yards. It looked good on his part.”

Dotson said his agility, which has always been above average for someone his size, has only gotten better.

“He’s making people miss,” Dotson said. “One thing I’ve said out here is that he should never be tackled by one guy in the state of New Mexico, and that’s true. Sometimes because he is so long he might get tripped up. But he is agile. We are going to know a lot more here in the next five weeks but he is healthy and ready to go.”

Dotson said he might be throwing on the run a little bit more over the next five weeks as the competition gets a lot tougher.

“Our offensive line isn’t real big or experienced but they are doing their best,” Dotson said. “We’ll know a lot more here in the next few weeks. The next five games we play we could win or lose them all.

“We’ll see a lot of how he reacts when things don’t go right. We’ll see what type of leader he is over these next five weeks. We’ll see things that challenge him coming up so I’ll have a better answer for you after these games.”

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