From backup to breakout season, Cavaliers’ Baldwin boosts passing grade


Lake Travis quarterback Matthew Baldwin considered himself a lucky young man when he received a scholarship offer this summer to play football for Colorado State next fall.

After all, Baldwin spent his junior season as Charlie Brewer’s caddy, taking over games after Lake Travis had built second-half leads of 40 points or more. When CSU made its offer to Baldwin in July, he had never started a high school game.

Not exactly the portfolio one touts to major-college recruiters.

Give Colorado State’s coaches credit. They were the first to recognize that Baldwin has the right stuff. In his limited playing time as a junior, he completed 76 percent of his passes and fired 10 for touchdowns. He was largely responsible for the Cavaliers’ 59-56 double-overtime victory over Cibolo Steele, a game Brewer left in the fourth quarter after taking a wicked shot to the head.

Unfortunately for CSU — and fortunately for Baldwin — the rest of the country appears to have discovered the 6-foot-3, 195-pound QB who thrives in a pro-style offense.

Ohio State recently became one of the latest programs to offer Baldwin a scholarship. They clearly noticed that he had completed 70 percent of his attempts this fall while passing for 285 yards a game. He also 31 TD passes against five interceptions.

Minnesota, Rice and Kentucky have offered scholarships, too.

Lake Travis has sent six quarterbacks to Power Five football programs in the past 12 years: Todd Reesing (Kansas); Garrett Gilbert (Texas, SMU); Michael Brewer (Texas Tech, Virginia Tech); Baker Mayfield (Texas Tech, Oklahoma); Dominic De Lira (Iowa State); and Charlie Brewer (Baylor).

And it appears Baldwin won’t be the last Cavaliers quarterback to sign with an FBS program.

Cavaliers coach Hank Carter said his team’s backup, sophomore Hudson Card, already holds a scholarship offer from SMU.

Eagles fly into postseason: Most of the usual suspects — Lake Travis, Westlake, Cedar Park to name a few — are gearing up for the UIL football playoffs.

Akins, 3-7, might be a surprise entrant. Making just their second postseason appearance, the Eagles have never finished a season with a winning record. Their coach, Humberto Garza, said it’s a big deal for the Eagles to be postseason players, even ones with a losing record.

“Our kids are extremely excited about all of their hard work paying off and they get the opportunity to continue in the playoffs,” Garza said Wednesday. “When I get asked about my team, I describe them as a bunch of gritty guys playing for one another. We don’t have a bunch of superstars, just a bunch of guys willing to work hard and that is what I really like about this bunch.”

The Eagles will face a rugged foe — 9-1 Cedar Ridge — in a Class 6A bi-district playoff Thursday night.

Passing grades for Griffin: Hutto’s Chase Griffin might be the best quarterback in Texas who is not being heavily recruited. Griffin, who’s listed at 5-10, has averaged 328 yards passing a game and has thrown 34 TD passes for the Hippos (9-1).

“Two inches!” said Hutto coach Steve Van Meter, whose team will open the Class 5A, Division II playoffs against Brenham (6-3). “That’s the difference in Chase having a dozen or so (scholarship) offers.”

Yale has made Griffin an offer, and Harvard has shown interest, too. As a junior, he still has another year to impress a few more schools.

It’s worked out for Matthew Baldwin.



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