November 23, 2011

Williams waits for offers

Stephen F. Austin is the only one to have cashed all in for the Marshall Williams sweepstakes, but the senior quarterback from Flower Mound, Texas is hoping for more offers, especially from FBS-level teams.

Williams is receiving interest from North Texas, Sam Houston State, SMU and Wake Forest. He likes both Houston and Arizona, but the Cougars already have one commitment from a quarterback and probably will not offer another one. The coaching change in Tucson from Mike Stoops to Rich Rodriguez will likely take Williams off the Wildcats radar.

The 6-foot-5 and 195-pound pro-style quarterback said Wake is his favorite, but the Demon Deacons have offered a scholarship to Tyler Cameron (Rated as the nation's No. 8 dual-threat quarterback and the No. 50 prospect in Florida).

Cameron is committed to South Florida, but visited UCLA last weekend and has also made trips to Purdue and Wake Forest this fall.

The Jupiter product said told Florida recruiting analyst Chris Nee that he is going to sit down with his parents to figure out the positives and negatives of his top suitors, so he can make his final decision.

"If he commits somewhere else then they'll make an offer to another quarterback and hopefully the next one in line is me," Williams said.

Highlands Ranch (Colo.) quarterback Steve Donatell (Rated as the nation's No. 19 dual-threat quarterback and the No. 8 prospect in Colorado), who is the son of the San Francisco 49ers secondary coach Ed Donatell also has the Deacs at the top of his list. However, he has yet to receive a scholarship-offer from Wake, but does have ones from Nebraska and Northern Colorado. It appears that Montana State will make an offer soon as well.

Wake Forest has also shown interest in Louisiana Tech commitment Ryan Higgins, but Winston-Salem appears to be too far from home for the Hutto (Texas) quarterback.

Tom Elrod is recruiting Williams for the Demon Deacons.

"He [Elrod] came to practice a couple of months ago when they had a bye week," Williams said. "He was out at one of our practices, and saw me throwing and everything. That's when we started talking more after he saw that practice."

The two now talk about once week, while conversations usually revolve around how their seasons are going.

Flower Mound's season has ended, so Williams said he now listens to Elrod tell him about how Wake fared in its game each week.

Through eight games Williams was the area passing leader with 3,300 yards and 33 touchdowns through the air. He also rushed for two touchdowns, but a shoulder injury forced him to watch the last two games from the sideline.

"We were playing Plano East it was toward the end of the game and someone fell on my shoulder wrong," Williams said. "I actually separated my shoulder. Luckily it was just a minor separation, like an AC-separation where it won't bother me ever like in the future. Lucky for me it wasn't a bad injury at all. I'm already throwing again and rehabbing."

Williams hopes to be back to 100-percent in another week.

He guided a no-huddle pass-heavy offense that was in shotgun every play, employing four to five wide receivers each snap. Williams said they threw the ball around 50 times a game. It required him to spend many hours watching film, and working on his passing mechanics, which has helped develop his fundamentals as a quarterback.

"I think my number one strength is my smartness, and ability to know where to go with the football," Williams said.

Williams spent his sophomore and junior year playing wide receiver.

"I became more mobile where I can get out of the pocket and outrun a linebacker, d-end or something and throw on the run," Williams said. "I think playing receiver got me faster, and playing receiver also helped me know a different standpoint of the game just what the receivers are thinking and helped me play quarterback this year, because I know how it feels to be [a] downfield runner."

He will not wow coaches and teams with breakaway speed, but a 4.7-forty-time is good for a drop-back passer.

What should also be to Williams' advantage is that he graduates in December, and hopes to enroll next semester at wherever he commits to.

"My plan is to be on campus somewhere I believe the date is January 17th somewhere there when the second semester starts, so I can already be attending that college and be ready for spring football where I can pretty much participate in spring football, where I can learn and compete for a job," Williams said. "I'm looking to be on campus and start the whole process early."

Williams said he does not want to drag out the recruiting process. He added that proximity is not a factor with him. The Flower Mound product just wants somewhere to play, and would prefer it to be at the FBS-level.

"Stephen F. Austin hadn't been talking to me for a while, but then I take this visit and I really like it there and then they made the offer so I like them a lot," Williams said. "I like Wake Forest too, because that's a good team. I think I'd like it there as well."

He has not even visited Wake Forest, but has built a good relationship with Elrod and likes the Deacs style of offense. Williams is also impressed with how many Texas natives (six) play for Wake. He said it shows how good Texas high school football is.

Williams hopes to keep the Texas pipeline alive for the Demon Deacons.

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