The wait is about to be over. Five-star quarterback Justin Fields is prepared to announce where he will play his college ball.
Atlanta television station Fox-5 was the first to report that the Harrison High standout will make his decision official during a 10:45 pep rally at his school Friday morning.
UGASports confirmed the report.
Fans at schools that include Georgia, Florida State, Auburn and LSU will be anxiously awaiting what he has to say.
“Whoever gets him is getting that guy who can extend the play and make things happen out of nothing,” Rivals.com National Recruiting Director Mike Farrell said. “Obviously, pro-style quarterbacks are all the rage in the NFL, but the escape ability of Fields, the ability to throw on the run, escape the rush as well as throw from the pocket are what wins national championships in college football. Whoever gets him is getting a program difference maker from a mobility standpoint.”
A five-star performer, Fields is the top dual-threat quarterback and No. 2 prospect in the 2018 Class.
Rivals.com’s Southeast Recruiting Analyst Chad Simmons knows Fields well, and says whoever gets the quarterback will not only be getting a great player, but a great person as well.
“You mention how good of a guy, he’s a great kid but what really impresses me about him is the intangibles and the way he processes things,” Simmons said. “He’s great in interviews at processing questions on the fly at a fast pace and it’s really shown on the football field probably the last nine, 10 months.”
Of course, it’s his talent that’s made Fields one of the top prospects in the entire country.
Succinctly put, the Harrison standout can do it all.
“He’s really developed as a passer. He has a big arm, he’s an athlete who can run, has good size and has made a lot of big plays,” Simmons said. “But what’s really taken his game to that next level is becoming a much better passer, the accuracy, setting his feet, squaring his shoulders, putting the ball where it needs to be down the field. That’s what really has taken him to the next level as a player and a prospect.”
As far as players Fields compares to, Farrell has a couple in mind, including one name that may surprise you.
No, one is not former Heisman Trophy winner and current Carolina Panther Cam Newton.
“Cam is much bigger. I know they’re both from Georgia and the Atlanta area, so you’re going to get those natural comparisons. Justin isn’t small, at 6-foot-3, but it’s tough. It’s interesting, because Justin reminds me a little bit of Andrew Luck. I know he’s been banged up in the NFL, but his ability to run and see the field while scrambling around, if you watch Luck in high school and most impressively in college, he was a guy who was going to throw first. That’s what Fields is going to develop into,” Farrell said. “They’re not going to use him as a Lamar Jackson, who’s essentially a running back half the time. His ability to scan the field and look downfield and know when to run and when not to and the smarts in the pocket and all of that reminds me of Andrew Luck. There’s not really a dual threat quarterback I want to compare him to, because I think Fields is just starting to come into his own as a pocket guy. I think what we see now is not what we’ll see in a couple of years. I think we’ll see more of Deshaun Watson-type than a Cam Newton-type.”
Wherever Fields commits, Simmons said there no reason he can’t get on the field sooner rather than later.
“No doubt. I think it goes back again to just the way he processes things. Just a sharp young man, very intelligent. Kids come out of high school and they’re athletic, obviously have a big arm, they can do this and do that but what he has between the ears is very impressive,” Simmons said. “Obviously, he’s physically fit to play early and what he has is what the college game is going to, is that athleticism, a true dual threat potential, the ability to run the ball and force a defense to scheme against his legs and when you have that as a weapon, it’s just an extra attribute to go with that strong arm.
“I see no reason that no matter where he goes that he can’t play immediately, or at least get on the field and push that quarterback for playing time.”