Sutphen Transfers to Avery

Things are shaping up for Avery County to have a solid 2005 football season. First there was the reclassifying to 1A from 2A, and then the switch to a spread offense – similar to the system used by Appalachian State. And now, the Vikings have a division I-A caliber quarterback to run that pass dominated offense.

Due to the relocation of his father's business, Garrett Sutphen, a 6-foot-3, 190-pound quarterback, will take his air show from Bunn to Newland.

"Basically what I did was some research around the state because I'm a custom shoe and boot maker – I have about ten years experience," said George Sutphen, Garrett's father. "I found that the Boone, Watagua County, Avery County, that whole area up there, the only shoe repair shop they had closed up about four months ago. So basically it's a chance to go to an area that has a need for a shoe repair shop and enhance my custom business – I equate boot making with the mountains."

The Sutphen's settled on Banner Elk, a town in Avery County that is at the base of all the ski resorts. The move will occur within the month and allows Garrett to enroll at Avery County High School in time for summer workouts.

Last season, Sutphen led Bunn to a 12-1 record with the only loss coming in the playoffs to East Carteret. Sutphen ended the season with 1,748 yards and 25 touchdowns through the air, while completing 89-of-153 passes (58%).

Those numbers figure to only escalate in the spread offense that includes a legit division I-A wide receiver in Josh Johnson.

Johnson, a 6-foot-2, 180-pound target, has dominated defensive backs in one-on-one passing drills at various combines with the help of Sutphen.

"During the March and April combine circuit we had an opportunity to meet a lot of kids that we haven't meet before and one of the kids was Josh Johnson of Avery County," said George Sutphen. "As it turns out that's where Garrett ended up going. Garrett is excited about the opportunity to play with someone of that quality, especially in an offense that throws the ball."

Sutphen and Johnson will be hitting the college camping circuit this summer together. Their schedule will include Tennessee, N.C. State, North Carolina, Wake Forest, and Appalachian State.

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