Shuler Bentley is a budding senior quarterback from South Carolina. He accepted a scholarship offer from FCS program Old Dominion over an offer from Cincinnati, among other recruiting interest. That commitment seemed like a coup for the Monarchs at the time, but it stands out even more after Friday, when Bentley outdid Peyton Manning on a high school field.
Bentley, the star for Duncan (S.C.) Byrnes High, passed for an astonishing nine touchdowns and ran for another as the Rebels routed Woodruff (S.C.) High, 82-49.
Bentley's nine touchdown passes set a new state record, edging the previous record that was held by former Byrnes QB Anthony Johnson and Myrtle Beach (S.C.) High star J.D. Melton. The 10th touchdown was an added 19-yard flourish as Byrnes, a traditional Palmetto State power, racked up a big early season victory.
By games end Bentley had thrown for 530 yards, which was good for a new Byrnes record. It was also good for a lion's share of Byrnes' 643 yards of total offense.
Bentley clearly knew that he was in the middle of something special, as he reflected after the historic performance.
"It's phenomenal," Bentley told the Spartanburg Herald Journal. "It makes a great memory. I've had a lot of memories on this field. But I don’t look at is as I broke the records. I look at is as we broke the records. We have awesome offensive linemen and awesome receivers. We broke the records tonight. Everybody who played on offense will have a memory."
Four of Bentley's scoring passes were caught by the wonderfully named Shaedon Meodors. As it turns out, Meodors only caught four passes all game, but all of them ended with him dancing into the end zone.
As for Bentley's future, Cincinnati coach Tommy Tuberville might just make another run at the pinpoint passer after Friday. There's no question that Bentley knows how to find the end zone.