After an eventful offseason, the Golden Eagles’ quarterback depth chart looks incredibly different than last fall’s chart.
With Keon Howard and Kwadra Griggs no longer on the roster, JUCO transfer Jack Abraham will be called upon to take the reigns as a starter in his first season with the Golden Eagles. Though inexperience at such an important position may concern many from the outside looking in, his coaches and teammates would argue that, frankly, you just “don’t know Jack.”
“Jack’s one of those really smart, cerebral quarterbacks,” Coach Jay Hopson said on Media Day. “He reminds me a lot of Nick [Mullens], and he’s doing a good job.”
His offensive coordinator, Shannon Dawson, was equally impressed with the transfer’s progress through just six months of being with the team.
“I thought he had a good [fall] camp,” Dawson said. “He takes care of the ball and doesn’t commit many turnovers. The ball typically goes to the right place. He’s a smart kid.”
Since high school, Jack Abraham has been proving doubters wrong at every stop along his journey. As an Oxford Charger, he led his team to three consecutive North State Championships and became the first Mississippi quarterback to throw for 12,000 yards and 100 touchdowns in a high school career, and in his senior season he was named the 2015 Mississippi Gatorade High School Football Player of the Year.
Originally committed to play for Tulane, Abraham’s scholarship offer was pulled after a coaching change for the Green Wave, and he elected to attend Louisiana Tech. After one year with the program, he transferred to Northwest Community College where he was given the opportunity to start as a sophomore and prove himself worthy of consideration by other Division 1 programs.
Abraham led the Rangers to a MACJC State Championship appearance with 2,949 passing yards for 23 touchdowns and a memorable upset over the No.1 ranked East Mississippi Lions.
In the state title game, a shootout in which the Rangers fell just short of victory, Abraham threw for an incredible 487 yards with five touchdowns, which caught the attention of many scouts — particularly those from Southern Miss. Abraham committed to USM in December of 2017 and enrolled in classes for January so that he could attend spring camp and start learning a new offensive system.
Originally told he would be competing for the backup position, Abraham admitted the biggest change for him is to make sure he brings leadership to the field.
“That’s the main thing, just coming out here and being a good leader, and showing these guys I’m capable of leading them to where they want go be,” Abraham said.
The junior transfer is well aware of his strengths as a player and what his coaches and teammates expect to see from him on the field.
“I’m really focusing on making sure I go to the right place with the ball and being accurate,” Abraham said. “These guys make me look good every day, so I just try to put the ball in the right spot for them and let them make plays.”
Southern Miss fans will get their first opportunity to see Jack Abraham live with the starting offensive unit on Saturday, Sept. 1 when he leads the Golden Eagles into their home opener versus the Jackson State Tigers.