Tennessee already has a highly-rated quarterback committed to them in their 2020 class, but UT’s coaches have already started to look early on at some QBs in the 2021 class. In their evaluation of sophomore signal callers, Tennessee’s coaches liked what they saw from the son of a former NFL quarterback and sent him an offer.
Jalen Kitna is a quarterback in the 2021 class who just recently transferred to Reedy High School in Frisco, Texas. He picked up an offer from the Vols on Monday morning and tweeted about it.
Had a great conversation with Coach Weinke and Coach Chaney at The University of Tennessee, looking forward to getting to know them throughout the next few years and want to say thank you for offering a scholarship to be a Volunteer! I appreciate y’all believing in me. #RockyTop pic.twitter.com/JdrOX4Elnj
— Jalen Kitna (@KitnaJalen) March 4, 2019
Kitna isn’t rated by recruiting services yet, but he’s already getting interest from Power Five schools. Not only have the Vols offered him, but he also has an offer from Colorado and has interest from other programs as well.
We spoke with Jalen Kitna about his offer from the Vols, what having a former NFL QB for a dad is like, and much more in an exclusive interview on RTI Premium!
Last season, Kitna played for Brophy College Prep over in Phoenix, Arizona. But he recently transferred to Frisco, Texas and will play for Reedy this season. The reason for the move? His dad, former NFL starting quarterback Jon Kitna, was hired to be the quarterbacks coach for the Dallas Cowboys, so his entire family had to move over to Texas.
Jon Kitna played for 14 years in the NFL, starting games for the Seattle Seahawks, Cincinnati Bengals, Detroit Lions, and Dallas Cowboys. In his 14-year NFL career, Kitna completed 60.3 percent of his 4,442 pass attempts for 29,745 yards, 169 touchdowns, and 165 interceptions. Kitna played college ball at Central Washington in the NAIA and was largely overlooked coming out of high school. But he landed on the Seahawks roster as an undrafted free agent, and he went on to have a successful NFL career.
It’s clear that the elder Kitna’s son won’t go unnoticed during his high school playing days like he was, though.
Jalen already has an impressive arm and is mobile enough to evade pressure when needed. He won’t burn anyone with his speed, but he has the footwork and awareness to prolong plays and keep away from pass rushers. His arm strength is extremely impressive, especially considering he just finished up his sophomore year. He already measures in at 6-foot-4, so he has a lot of intangibles and measurables that coaches like. He does need to work on some of his mechanics, but he has a very strong base of skills to work with and already has a lot of promise.
As a sophomore last season, Kitna completed 53.5 percent of his 241 passes for 1,474 yards, 16 touchdowns, and 17 interceptions according to MaxPreps. He also scored three times on the ground.
Tennessee will likely try to add at least one quarterback in their 2021 class, and they’re already in on a QB who looks like he could develop into one of the stronger prospects in that cycle. It’s still early, but the Vols have positioned themselves well with Kitna, and his recruitment will be very interesting to follow.