For Logan Cross, his athletic career took a dramatic turn one steamy afternoon last summer.
It was then, after an off-season practice, he learned that he would be the starting quarterback at Social Circle.
Running a high school offense is a daunting task, especially for a program that’s enjoyed little success over the past decade. The fact Cross was an incoming freshman only made it tougher.
“I knew the starter from the year before wasn’t coming back,” Cross said. “But I didn’t really think I’d get to play.”
But play he did. For a team that earned just one victory, the 6-foot-4 youngster stood tall and tough in the pocket all season, finishing with 1,460 passing yards.
That was just 27 yards behind Loganville’s second-year starter Tanner Green, the county’s two-time passing champ, and 12 yards ahead of Selatian Straughter, Monroe Area’s sophomore sensation.
With a year under his belt and his team under new management, Cross is confident he can compile even more impressive statistics and his team will add a few more wins.
Confidence has never been an issue for Cross. Having played football since he was 5 years old, he’s well-versed in the nuances of the game. With his size and strong arm, he possesses all the tools to rise above the rest.
Certainly, Social Circle’s new coaching staff is happy to have inherited a returning signal caller, along with an impressive supporting cast. Also back is wideout Eric Taylor, who led the county in passing last fall, and Amarian Russell, who was third in rushing.
But it will be Cross who’ll be counted on to make the offense go.
Jimmy Jarrett, the Redskins’ new offensive coordinator, is impressed with what little he’s seen so far, mostly on film and in the weight room.
“He’s definitely got a big arm, and he can make all the throws,” Jarrett said. “I like how he’s strong in the pocket, he moves forward, never panics.”
He also likes how his quarterback has taken charge in the offseason.
“He’s called up some of the other receivers and backs and met out on the field or somewhere to run routes and throw the ball around,” Jarrett said.
Cross will have plenty of opportunities to show off his arm in what’s expected to be a pass-heavy Redskins offense. The heavy workload shouldn’t be problem
Cross was second in the county in pass attempts last fall behind Greene, who was coached by Jarrett the past two years.
His best showing came in the season finale, a 50-20 loss to Jasper County, in which Cross completed 27 of 42 passes for 334 yards and three touchdowns.
“During the season, when things would go wrong, we would really get down on ourselves,” Cross said. “But in that game, we just kept pushing ourselves and didn’t give up.”
It’s that never-say-die attitude in a leader that could help the Redskins snap a decade-long postseason drought.