GREENVILLE — Replacing a starting quarterback isn’t always a cut and dry situation.
And it really doesn’t simplify things when the guy who left throw for nearly 2,500 yards and 26 touchdowns.
Those were former St. Joe quarterback Derrick Brown’s numbers last season, as he led the Fighting Irish to a 6-5 record to cap off his prep career.
Now that Brown won’t be in the huddle anymore, one of the four players competing for the starting gig should pick up right where he left off, said coach John Baker.
Led by last year’s backup quarterback junior lefty Jacob Reifers, the list includes sophomores Raines Rester and Kody Jenkins and freshman Josh Taylor.
With last year’s experience and spot-on passes during Thursday’s 7-on-7 games, although still an open position, Reifers is leading the pack, said Baker.
“(Reifers) has the experience and a real calm demeanor about him,” he said. “He knows a good bit of our plays and he started at receiver last year. So he’s seen both sides of the fence.”
Rester, a 6-foot-3 standout baseball player, played tight end last season. Jenkins was listed as a running back and defensive back last year while newcomer Taylor has thrown his name in the mix.
They all bring something different to the field, Baker said, and the competition will ultimately be a good thing for all four players.
“It’s going to to make them all better,” he said. “The ones that don’t get the job will help us in many other ways.”
St. Joe was on their homefield Thursday competing in the Passing League’s 7-on-7 games competing against Simmons, Yazoo City, Shaw, Leland, Humphreys County, Cleveland and Lakeside (Ark.).
The games are one way the Irish and other area teams have stayed in shape over the summer. Next week will be dead week, where players and coaches will get the week off.
Then it’ll be back to work, said Baker.
It’s all in preparation for a district which includes a a flood of talent including Durant, Coffeeville, Ray Brooks and Shaw.
“We, without a doubt, have the hardest district in single A,” Baker said. “Durant is a state championship team.....and Ray Brooks has won two state championships in the last 10 years.
“We have the most brutal district in 1A.”
St. Joe will open their season August 20 when they face rival Riverside.