On the same week that Hylton High School quarterback Travon McMillian trimmed his list of possible college destinations, the state’s top-rated QB prospect removed himself from the market.
Lake Braddock High School signalcaller Caleb Henderson, rated the No. 3 junior in Virginia by The Roanoke Times, declared that he will sign with North Carolina.
Henderson (6 foot 4, 223 pounds) didn’t have an offer from the Tar Heels until he visited Chapel Hill on Wednesday. He was to have visited Virginia Tech today and Tennessee on Saturday, according to Preston Williams’ blog on the Washington Post site this morning.
Henderson, who passed for 2,435 yards and 19 touchdowns as a junior at Lake Braddock, follows in the footsteps of another northern Virginia quarterback who has plied his trade in Chapel Hill, Bryn Renner.
Indeed, Renner, who will enter his third season as the Tar Heels’ starter, has a connection to Henderson. Renner’s father, Bill, who coached his son at West Springfield, served as the offensive coordinator at Lake Braddock after resigning as West Springfield head coach.
Virginia and Virginia Tech were among six ACC programs that made scholarship offers to Henderson, who also had offers from Boston College, Maryland and Miami. Henderson was the only pro-style quarterback offered by the Cavaliers, who could have as many as six scholarship QBs on their 2013 roster, although it appears likely that All-Tidewater QB Corwin Cutler will prep at Fork Union.
WHEN BILL RENNER returned my call today, he gave me a little more background on Henderson, who actually spent his first two years at West Potomac, where his father, Ken, was the head coach.
Ken Henderson resigned as West Potomac coach following the 2011 season and took a job coaching the defense at Lake Braddock. His son came with him, as did two West Potomac assistants, Sean Brooks and Dave Murray.
Sean Brooks had been a back-up quarterback under Renner at West Springfield, as well as a West Springfield assistant, and had installed Renner’s system at West Potomac – the same system that Lake Braddock is running now with Caleb Henderson.
Bryn Renner will wrap up his career before Henderson ever arrives on campus “but I can still go to games and watch somebody I know,” said Bill Renner, a former Virginia Tech punter who has been the coach at East Chapel Hill (N.C.) High School since 2010.
WHILE HENDERSON HAD more than 100 carries as a junior and rushed for 435 yards, McMillian (6-0, 196) is seen as more of a dual threat quarterback who possibly could play another position in college.
McMillian, who actually has more offers (14) than Henderson (nine) according to the rivals.com database, this week came out with a top five of Virginia Tech, Virginia, California, Stanford and Georgia Tech.
McMillian passed for 1,313 yards and rushed for 1,194 yards in 13 games last year, when he actually had more rushing attempts (201) than passing attempts (165). He had separate games where he passed for 200 yards and rushed for 200 yards, but was less than a 50-percent passer.
Stanford already has two scholarship quarterbacks from Virginia, Kevin Hogan and Ryan Burns, although Hogan, who lists his hometown as McLean, played at Gonzaga in Washington, D.C.
NEXT WEDNESDAY MARKS the first day of the spring signing period for college basketball and it looks as if Virginia Tech is serious about taking a sixth scholarship freshman.
Drawing the Hokies’ attention of late is Devin Wilson, a 6-4, 185-pound guard from Montour High School in McKees Rock, Pa.
West Virginia is the most prominent of nine schools who have made offers to Wilson, according to rivals.com, although it’s hard to say how current that list is, since Tech isn’t on it.
One of the reasons Wilson is available is his uncertainty over whether he wanted to play football or basketball in college. He had 71 receptions for more than 900 yards as a junior.
Wilson was at Tech on the final weekend of March and the Hokies are said to be in the mix with WVU, George Mason and St. Joe’s, where he is visiting this weekend.
TECH COACH JAMES JOHNSON told me Thursday that he would be more inclined to take a high-school kid than turn to the ever-growing list of transfer candidates.
“We had a good [transfer] last year in Adam Smith,” Johnson said of a 3-point specialist the Hokies have added from UNC-Wilmington, “but I don’t want to get anybody else’s mistakes.”
A sixth freshman might create an imbalance with the seven scholarship players Tech has in its other three classes, but there’s always a possibility that a freshman could be redshirted, Johnson said.