Sophomore quarterbacks aren’t supposed to do what Justice Hansen (Edmond, Okla./Santa Fe) did Friday night.
Down 36-34 with 1:06 left in the fourth quarter in a hostile environment, Hansen led Edmond Santa Fe on a 65-yard drive that culminated with a 20-yard touchdown pass with 22 seconds left in a 40-36 win at Lawton, Okla.
But if you ask Edmond Santa Fe coach Lance Manning, Hansen isn’t like most sophomore quarterbacks.
“We don’t really treat him like a sophomore,” Manning said. “He has such a great understanding of the game and is only getting better.”
Hansen, 6-foot-4 and 190 pounds, knows the expectations. He performed well at OU’s camp in the summer and hasn’t disappointed.
He has rushed for five touchdowns and thrown for seven more. Against a talented Lawton defense, he rushed for one score and threw for two.
“Every game is a learning process for me. Every game I keep saying is the craziest game I’ve been a part of,” Hansen said.
Hansen is already among one of the best pure passers in the state. But what he is showing through the first half of the regular season is he is a physical runner, too.
On that final drive, Hansen completed five of his six passes for 65 yards. Three of those completions, including the game-winning score, went to junior Trevan Smith.
Smith is the younger brother of former OU defensive back Reggie Smith. Trevan Smith might be quicker than his brother, but he is smaller.
Trevan Smith is 5-foot-8 and 165 pounds, but he keeps making plays. He has rushed for three touchdowns, caught passes for three more and returned a kickoff for a score.
Smith’s elusiveness in open space makes him such a threat any time he touches the ball. On the game-winning touchdown, he juked two defenders with his feet before scoring.
“I don’t really think about things. I’m doing what comes naturally to me,” Smith said.
In the game, Smith had an 81-yard touchdown run, an interception and a forced fumble. He also showed his physicality in taking out a defender on a block to spring another touchdown. Smith is receiving some attention from OU and is also being recruited by Penn State.
Edmond Santa Fe was 4-16 in the last two seasons. It is 4-1 this year, and Hansen and Smith are two big reasons why college coaches will be flocking to the Edmond school the next couple of years.
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Any worries about the health of Lawton defensive end D.J. Ward are over. Ward, who has an OU offer, was dominant against Edmond Santa Fe.
Ward had seven tackles, two sacks and recovered two fumbles. His explosiveness off the snap was back, and Edmond Santa Fe simply had no answer on how to contain him.Ward injured his shoulder three weeks ago.
Ward has visited OU twice this year and was at TCU on Saturday.