Two to watch at Locust Grove

LUELLA, Ga. -- Locust Grove has only been in existence for three years now, but head coach Clint Satterfield already has a couple of athletes who could help put the program on the map: Quarterback Keenan Wise and 2014 athlete Cortez McDowell.

Wise, at 6-foot-1 and 180 pounds, is a dual-threat passer who already has coaches, including Dan Mullen at Mississippi State, intrigued.

“Keenan is a versatile quarterback with tremendous speed and good arm strength,” Satterfield said. “Once he adds weight he is going to be another big-time player.”

Wise has high goals, with hopes of following in the footsteps of former SEC quarterbacks Peyton Manning, Cam Newton and Tim Tebow. The coaching staff has him in the weight room and also working on his footwork and mechanics, and he thinks it is going to pay off.

“Last year we did not have the best season, but I just tried to do my best to make plays,” Wise said. “Right now I run the ball a lot, but I would like to sit in the pocket and throw more in a pro-style offense to get ready for the next level. I would like to have a chance to play in the SEC because it is close to home, but really I just want to play football.”

A varsity starter as a freshman and sophomore, McDowell has made close to 150 tackles and has also had several key plays at wide receiver and in the return game. Satterfield feels McDowell, now pushing 6-foot-0 and 200 pounds, could grow into an Alec Ogletree-type talent in the next four years.

“I think Cortez has a lot of upside,” Satterfield said. “He is 15 years old right now, so down the road he could develop into an outside linebacker or he could be a big safety. He is able to use his size and speed to tackle through the ball carrier.”

McDowell would like to hear from Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Mississippi State and Oregon, programs he believes have great coaching staffs that treat their players well. Like his coach, McDowell sees himself as a big safety or possibly an outside linebacker at the next level.