Photo by Derrick Mahone
Drew quarterback Jay Murray has accounted for seven touchdowns this season as the Titans face top-ranked Sandy Creek Saturday at the Georgia Dome.
Drew coach Jarrett Laws knew from a mental standpoint that junior quarterback Jay Murray could lead the team this season.
Laws biggest concern was from the physical aspect of the game.
This past offseason, Laws spent time working with Murray on his mechanics, particularly his throwing release.
“From the arm strength, Jay was fine,” Laws said. “Mentally, he was tough and his heart is here at quarterback.”
Once Laws made some corrective measures on Murray’s mechanics, he was in a good position to challenge returning starter Barry Mayes for the starting job. However, that quarterback competition never took place after Mays decided to follow his love for basketball.
Handed the starting job, Murray hasn’t disappointed.
He has lead the Titans to a 2-1 overall record and 1-0 mark in Region 4-AAA heading into Saturday’s game against top-ranked Sandy Creek at the Georgia Dome. Through the first three games, Murray has accounted for seven touchdowns in leading an offense that is averaging 20 points per game.
The Titans are a missed two-point conversion away from being undefeated.
And Murray has taken all this in stride.
“I felt I was ready to lead this team because I put in the preparations over the summer,” Murray said. “It was just a matter of me waiting my turn. I felt that I was well-prepared for this opportunity.”
He says that the 6-foot-1, 170-pounder has a high football IQ that has made up for his lack of playing experience.
“Jay is always thinking about different scenarios that can happen on the field,” Laws said. “From Monday through Thursday, he has gone over almost every possibility that can happen in a game. He has a high order of thinking when it comes to football.”
At one point during his career, Laws had tried to switch him to another position just to get him playing time.
But it became quite obvious that quarterback was his true position.
“He just had that passion for the position,” Laws said.
“I worked hard in the weight room to get stronger,” Murray said. “I’ve worked hard on the mental and physical approach to the game. I’ve always had confidence, but with each game it has really grown.”
Murray’s teammates has sense the boost in confidence.
“Jay is a good quarterback,” senior wide receiver Jadarius West said. “He reads the defense well, and he knows how to keep a team together. I was worried a little how he would handle the pressure of the situation as a starter, but he has done real well.”