Yesterday, we profiled James Lark from St. George, Utah… today, we look at another quarterback from the Beehive State who put up record-setting numbers and is primed to be one of the top QB recruits in the Class of '06.
Alex Cate of Salt Lake City Cottonwood High is the son of a former college QB and one former D-I recruiting coordinator says, "Being in Utah, Alex may be overlooked, but if he was in the Midwest he'd have every Big 10 school after him."
Cate, a 6-foot-2, 200 pound quarterback from Salt Lake City (Utah) Cottonwood has nice physical tools but is known for his poise and ability to stay calm under pressure. Last year, his team ran the two-minute drill nine times at the end of the first half or game and the team scored eight touchdowns and kicked a field goal.
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"Alex is the calmest quarterback I've ever been around," says his father, Scott, who was a quarterback at the Univ. of Utah in the early '80's and now serves as his son's offensive coordinator and quarterback coach. "Nothing flusters him."
Although he put up big numbers last season—3,437 yards in the air and 40 TDs despite having a blue chip running back, Stanley Havili, who rushed for 1,832 yards and 18 TDs—Cate saved his best performance for last.
Although the Colts lost the state 5A championship game to Davis, 50-43, in overtime, Cate certainly couldn't be blamed: he went 24-52 for 465 yards and five TDs and tied the game with 43 seconds to go when he led Cottonwood down the field going 5-5 for 68 yards and a score.
The junior broke eight playoff records and was a Student Sports 2004 Junior All-American and unanimous 1st team all-state pick.
"Alex is a gunslinger," says Brian McNeely, a former D-I recruiting coordinator at Colorado and Indiana and 23-year college coaching veteran. "I really like his strong arm and quick release and he plays more mature than his age. He shows outstanding confidence and can definitely play at the BCS level.
"There's no doubt that if he was in the Midwest, he'd have all the Big 10 schools after him. "You have to consider he's a young 16 (years old) and he's going to get better with fine-tuning."
As for colleges he's interested in, Alex's father admits, "We really haven't thought much about it until now. We waited until the season was over and now we're targeting 15 schools we're interested in including Utah, Cal, Washington, Michigan, Northwestern, Auburn, Colorado and Texas Tech, among others."
"Utah has said he's No. 1 on their list," continued the coach and father, "and it's nearby, but Alex just wants to play where there's good coaching. He's looking at BCS schools primarily because of the (better) competition, but another factor is Alex wants to go to a good business school. We're not Mormon, so we want to dispel the notion that he'll stay local to play only at Utah, BYU or Utah State, as some college coaches have believed. Alex is a 'travel kid,' having gone to a lot of events across the country so he's not afraid to go away from home."
This season, both Cates will get more travel time in, going to River Ridge, Louisiana as Cottonwood will battle one of the top programs in the nation, John Curtis High. The junior will also hit the Nike Football Training Camp in Palo Alto, Calif., in May, a regional EA SPORTS Elite 11 tryout to be held in Las Vegas and several to-be-determined college camps over the summer. Because of the busy spring, the varsity baseball starter will skip playing this year to focus on football.