Cincinnati’s coaching staff has been absolutely cleaning up lately on the recruiting trail, this time landing 4-star quarterback Ross Trail. This was first reported by Scout’s Dave Berk. The signal caller from Wynne, Arkansas was originally verballed to Louisville way back when Charlie Strong was still the Cardinals’ head coach. Upon his departure to Texas, Trail pulled out of his commitment. Louisville’s loss is Cincinnati’s gain, apparently, as Tommy Tuberville and crew may have found their heir apparent to Gunner Kiel. Trail boasts offers from Louisville and Memphis with several SEC schools including Ole Miss sniffing around. Hopefully the Bearcats can hold them off to see a signature from the quarterback on National Signing Day.
- Position: Quarterback
- Hometown: Wynne, AR
- High School: Olive Branch (Mississippi)
- Height, Weight: 6’3″, 200 lbs
- Offers: Louisville, Memphis, Arkansas State, Southern Miss
- Composite Rating: *** – 88
- 247 Sports Rating: **** -90
- ESPN Rating: **** – 80
- Rivals Rating: *** – 5.7
- Scout Rating: ***
Trail seems to be able to make all the passes; slats, outs, fades to the sideline, post. The quarterback displays an excellent combination of strength to muscle it over the middle in traffic and touch to float it to his intended target just as he’s about to step out of bounds. Trail also displays a quick release on his passes. The football really seems to “snap” out of his hand to the receiver. His elbow could be a little higher during his throwing motion but that impediment is negated by the speed of his release.
I’m really impressed with Trail’s pocket presence as well. When some quarterbacks work through their check downs, they panic after WR-1 is covered and start looking at the defenders around him rather than keeping his eyes downfield. Trail doesn’t. When pressure comes, he steps up in the pocket and continues to scan the field for an open receiver. Plus, when all else fails, Trail seems to have the legs to escape danger and pick up a few yards on the ground. Overall, this appears to be a well-rounded quarterback prospect.
With Gunner Kiel entering his junior season in 2015, assuming everything goes as planned this year, Trail could be looking at a redshirt as a freshman. That should only help the young quarterback’s development as he can learn behind Kiel without the pressure of coming in at a moment’s notice. This role will likely go to Jarred Evans in 2015. But, the following season (2016, sorry try to stay with me), Kiel will be a senior with Trail a redshirt freshman and Evans graduated. Trail will then have the opportunity to learn behind the veteran but also get his feet wet in garbage time for the Bearcats. That’s how I would handle the young man’s development at Cincinnati, anyways.