July 14, 2011

Hokies latest to join race for top QB

A top quarterback for 2013 was amongst the major visitors to make a showing at Virginia Tech's camp this past Saturday. Just prior to camp the Hokies were the latest team to extend an offer and now are among a half dozen schools in hot pursuit.

"Virginia Tech offered last week," Statesville, N.C. 2013 quarterback Carlis Parker said. "I have six offers (Virginia Tech, North Carolina, NC State, South Carolina, Wake Forest and East Carolina)."

For Parker, landing these offers shows the work has paid off.

"To me it's an accomplishment of all the hard work I've put in," he said. "Sometimes I think people overlook that a lot, I have put in a lot of work to my game to become a better passing quarterback than a year ago."

The transformation has been a remarkable one as just two years ago Parker was making the move entering high school from wide receiver to quarterback.

"Before I played wide receiver in elementary school, but when I came to Statesville athletically I was good, but my mechanics were terrible," he said. "They needed a lot of work and from then to now I've worked on my mechanics and everything."

That work culminated in a breakout sophomore season that saw Parker run for 1,200-yards, throw for 1,800 and account for 27 total touchdowns while earning team MVP, all-conference and all-county.

Despite the attention from college coaches, Parker isn't letting it get to him.

"It means a lot, but you know I'm really not worrying about it," he said. "I've got two more years to go and I'm really trying to not let all of this get to me, there's still a long way to go.

"I know that all the colleges that have offered me already are really interested in me."

Still, Parker isn't avoiding recruiting completely with visits this summer to East Carolina, Duke and this past weekend, Virginia Tech.

"I really loved the campus at Virginia Tech," he said. "Like I was telling Tristan (Mumford) when we first got out of the car, I fell in love with the place. I really liked it. I loved the stone and how everything was stone. I really liked that. Also, just the atmosphere, I could really get used to it."

Parker went in a bit more depth on his visit to Blacksburg.

"Our coach took us around the campus more since he grew up down there in the Virginia area and went to college down there too. He actually has a niece and nephew that go to Virginia Tech so he's pretty familiar with the campus," he said. "The Virginia Tech coaches were really cool too. I really liked the coaches down there.

"I got to meet Coach Beamer and I was kind of nervous at first, but he seemed pretty cool."

One more visit is coming for Parker before he focuses back on the season, South Carolina on July 25th.

With his junior season quickly approaching, the 6-foot-4, 187-pounder wants to continue to improve his game this year.

"I'm working on my accuracy, that's the biggest thing I really need to work on. I've gotten a lot better where I can throw any pass on the field, but I want to continue to improve. I'm also working on my drops this year," he said. "I have a lot of goals for this season. I'd like to throw over 2,500-yards passing and make all-state this year. I want to win the conference and then whatever happens from there we'll see."

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