If he had it his way, Isaiah Smith would still be lining up at wide receiver. He caught 33 passes for 568 yards and eight touchdowns as a junior last season.
But the Blake Bengals needed a quarterback, so Smith – who played quarterback for two seasons on the junior varsity – had to switch positions. It did not take long, however, for Smith to realize the shirt might be easier than he thought.
Smith completed 17 of 28 passes for 258 yards and four touchdowns and rushed 11 times for 180 yards and another score this past Friday as Blake opened its season with a 35-19 win over Poolesville. It was his first touchdown pass, a three-yarder to Cyrus Wilson, that made the biggest difference, Smith said.
“It was a run play but I checked to a slant because I saw the safety was too far on the other side and there was no alley defender,” Smith said. “That first touchdown helped me a lot, helped me realize that moving back to quarterback isn’t as bad as I thought it would be.”
For his efforts, Smith was named the Military Bowl DC Touchdown Club High School Football Player of the Week.
Although he is only 5 feet 9 and 145 pounds, Blake Coach DeShawn Anderson said that Smith is helped by his toughness.
“He’s a small guy, but he’s shifty,” Anderson said, noting that Smith’s older brother, Isaac, plays wide receiver at Frostburg State. “He’s not afraid to stick his head in there at all. He took a couple good licks Friday and he bounced right up.”
Others considered for Player of the Week honors were:
South River RB Delvin Johnson carried 21 times for 227 yards and a touchdown and caught three passes for 94 yards and two more scores as the Seahawks beat Westminster, 42-20.
Frederick QB Kisaye Barnes threw three touchdown passes (80, 25, 35) and rushed for three more scores (20, 5, 15) as the Cadets beat Silver Oak, 51-18.
River Hill RB-DB Beau Brade, a Maryland recruit, rushed nine times for 61 yards and a touchdown and intercepted a pass on defense as the Hawks beat Atholton, 33-8.
Tuscarora WR Ryan Upp caught 11 passes for 148 yards and a touchdown as the Huskies beat Potomac Falls, 40-12.
Yorktown QB Grant Wilson completed 18 of 23 passes for 303 yards and one touchdown as the Patriots beat Wilson, 40-0.
Wise QB Jayden Sauray threw two touchdown passes and ran for a third score as the Pumas beat Eleanor Roosevelt, 41-0.
Freedom-Woodbridge QB Quest Powell completed 11 of 12 passes for 238 and four touchdowns and rushed for another score as the Eagles beat Riverbend, 47-0.
Flint Hill RB Justice Ellison caught four passes for 108 yards including touchdown passes of 32 and 51 yards and rushed for 61 yards and a third score as the Huskies beat Paul VI Catholic, 28-6, for their 23rd consecutive win.
North Point’s Teddy Gleaton, normally a wide receiver but starting at quarterback because of a teammate’s injury, accounted for three touchdowns as the Eagles beat Arundel, 55-32.
Gonzaga QB Caleb Williams completed 13 of 21 passes for 244 yards and three touchdowns and rushed 10 times for 162 yards and two more scores as the Eagles beat Don Bosco (N.J.), 35-21.