Vols Showing Interest in JUCO Quarterback

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    (Photo via @JarrodHoyer12 on Twitter)

    Tennessee’s quarterback battle for the 2018 season has grabbed headlines ever since Stanford grad transfer quarterback Keller Chryst decided to transfer to the Vols for this upcoming season. But for all the attention this year’s battle is getting, next year could prove to be another year of uncertainty at quarterback for Tennessee.

    This season will determine a lot about the Vols’ quarterback position for 2019. Chryst could be the answer this year, or he could not be. If he does win the job, does Jarrett Guarantano transfer? How about Will McBride?

    Regardless of what happens, Tennessee’s coaches are looking to add one if not two quarterbacks in the 2019 recruiting class. And they have their eyes on a junior college quarterback among others right now.

    Jarrod Hoyer is a JUCO quarterback who plays for Diablo Valley Community College in California. He played in high school at Dougherty Valley High School, and he’s taken an interesting path to where he is now.

    In an interview with Rivals.com, Hoyer detailed his journey to how he’s ended up in junior college. “I went to Bishop O’Dowd High School in Oakland for my first three years,” Hoyer said in the interview. “I was hurt my junior year. I actually had a stress fracture in my L4 vertebrae the doctors said occurred from growing. I grew 4 inches in less than a year.”

    From there, Hoyer went to Dougherty Valley. The only problem with that move was that Dougherty Valley already had a quarterback, so Hoyer ended up playing receiver. He transitioned back to quarterback before the end of the season because of an injury to their starter, but his move to a new school and lack of film of him at QB led to his decision to go the JUCO route. He initially went to Laney Community College in Oakland where he grayshirted in football and played baseball. Then he moved to Diablo Valley where he is now.

    So how did Tennessee hear about Hoyer? Kevin Simon, former Vol linebacker and current off-field assistant on Jeremy Pruitt’s staff, knows Hoyer’s quarterbacks coach at Diablo Valley. Hoyer said Tennessee reached out to him about a month ago and invited him to the Orange & White Game.

    “For this next year, they said they are in the market for a guy with some experience, either a JUCO or transfer guy,” Hoyer said of Tennessee’s coaches. “My first two years of high school I was in a pro-style offense. Now I’m in more of a spread offense. But I’m more of a drop back pro-style guy. I think it fits me.

    “I was in the quarterback meetings on Friday. I visited with Coach Helton and he told me that he was going to come out in spring practice to see me throw.”

    Hoyer isn’t rated by any major recruiting service, and Tennessee has yet to offer him. In fact, Hoyer doesn’t have any listed FBS scholarship offers right now. But the Vols are staying in contact with him, and his film from his first year at Diablo Valley shows why Tennessee is interested in him and why other schools may soon contact him too.

    At 6-foot-5, 220 pounds, Hoyer has the typical size of a pro-style quarterback, and he certainly looks the part on the field. When he throws, he makes it look effortless, and he can throw a variety of passes. His film doesn’t really show him tossing a lot of deep passes, but he fits his throws into some tight windows and puts it on the money for his receivers a lot. Hoyer doesn’t run much, if at all, but he has some escapability and doesn’t go down easy in the pocket when faced with pressure.

    According to the school’s website, Hoyer threw for 928 yards, seven touchdowns, and two interceptions last year for Diablo Valley. His 49.2 completion percentage raises some eyebrows, however.

    Tennessee has offered 19 quarterbacks in the 2019 recruiting cycle. Four-star Grant Gunnell, four-star Hank Bachmeier, four-star Jayden Daniels, and three-star Travis Mumphrey are likely the Vols’ top targets in this class right now. It’s unclear just how much interest Tennessee truly has in Hoyer, but we’ll continue to monitor and give you updates when available.

    Nathanael Rutherford is the managing editor and social media manager for Rocky Top Insider. Nathanael graduated from the University of Tennessee and cultivated a passion for the Vols while growing up in Knoxville a mere 10 minutes from Neyland Stadium. He's been a part of the RTI team since November of 2015 and has been the editor of RTI since June of 2017. If he's not talking or writing about Tennessee athletics, he's probably talking about Star Wars.