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    Thursday, October 18, 2007

    Recruiting Q&A: E.J. Manuel

    Thanks to Jami Frankenberry of The Virginian-Pilot in Norfolk, Va. who covers high school football for the paper. He was kind enough to answer a few questions for me regarding E.J. Manuel.

    1. I have watched a few game film clips and read great reviews on EJ. Is he the real thing ?

    Manuel isn’t putting up huge numbers this season: 1,214 passing yards and 12 TDs through seven games. But when he’s good, he’s very good, and he looks like a blue-chip QB. He started slowly this season and was missing some open receivers, but in recent weeks has heated up. He’s thrown only one interception in the past three games. He admitted that maybe early on he was putting too much pressure on himself. Now he’s more relaxed and it shows. His coach hasn’t exactly aired it out. In a recent game Manuel attempted only seven passes.

    2. What impresses you the most about E.J. ?

    His poise in the pocket and his maturity. Even when he struggles he doesn’t throw things on the sideline, berate his receivers, complain to his coaches. If he’s ever frustrated, it doesn’t show.

    3. Schools like FSU are now more concerned about the overall athlete. What kind of kid is he in general?

    Manuel doesn’t strike me as someone who’s going to be a trouble-maker at FSU. He’s a bright, humble kid, a “yes, sir” and “no, sir” guy who always is very polite.

    4. Is he a pro style QB that can run if need be or is running part of who he is as a QB?

    He’s a drop-back passer, but he can scramble – and is pretty good at it – if need be. He’d much rather stand in the pocket and look for an open receiver than take off running.

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