May 15, 2012

Peach State QB interested in Tide

Alpharetta, Ga., quarterback Joshua Dobbs has largely flown under the radar for much of his high school career, but if recent trends are any indicator, those days of obscurity are numbered.

"I honestly believe he's the nation's best kept secret," Alpharetta head coach Jason Dukes said. "It's amazing because the interest for him has come from all around the country."

Dukes said he believes the reason his quarterback has gone unnoticed until recently is because of the recruiting practices of the nearby schools. Dukes said that a lot of colleges evaluate quarterbacks over several years, so when someone new breaks out, it takes them a while to adjust. Regardless, he said that one of the first moments he noticed Dobbs was finally getting good exposure was during a conversation with one of Southern California's coaches.

"They've got the No.1 quarterback in the country committed and they saw Josh's tape and they said, 'Wow, this kid can really, really play,'" Dukes said. "Coming from a place like that, they were impressed."

Dobbs said he believes he flew under the radar because until this year, he played for a small, private 1A school before moving to Alpharetta, a 5A school. He said the leaders in his recruitment are the schools which have offered him a chance to play quarterback at the next level. Those schools are Arizona State, Boston College, Duke, Illinois, Princeton, Wake Forest and Yale.

Alabama has not offered him a scholarship yet and he isn't sure how close he is to an offer. Dobbs said he thinks Alabama wants to evaluate him closer in person, something he will make sure happens when he attends the Crimson Tide's camp this summer.

Dobbs said he grew up in Birmingham and has a lot of family in Mississippi so is familiar with Tuscaloosa and Alabama, both the campus and the facilities. He said the familiarity helps the Crimson Tide a lot in his eyes.

"It's only natural to be drawn to a college you're familiar with and you understand the campus," Dobbs said. "A college that makes you feel at home."

Dukes said Dobbs has a rocket arm as well as being very intelligent, both on the field and off. He said another large reason for Dobbs' recent attention was his breakout junior season, during which Dobbs threw for 3,113 yards and 31 touchdowns.

"He continues to improve as a quarterback," Dukes said. "I believe he is one of the elite quarterbacks in the country."

Dobbs said his strengths as a player are his footwork, his timing with receivers, and his ability to make throws all over the field. He said he considers himself a pro-style quarterback and takes great pride in being able to fill that role to the fullest.

He said he likes Alabama because of the prestige the Alabama name carries as well as how well the players have been coached under Nick Saban. Dobbs described Alabama as a powerhouse, with their recent track record in the SEC to back up that claim. Even though he lacks an offer from the Crimson Tide, if he were to receive one soon, he would certainly give Alabama a long look.

"Alabama would be high on my list," Dobbs said. "With them being a prestigious program with the opportunity to play in the SEC, and the chance to compete against the top competition and the chance to get coached by a great coaching staff under Coach Nick Saban."

There is more, however, to Dobbs recruitment than just football and academics. He plays baseball as well, receiving an offer to play at Duke and that could factor into where he makes his decision.

"I want to play the sport that gives me the opportunity to attend the school of my choice," Dobbs said. "So baseball is important like football is important to me."

Dobbs said he doesn't want his recruitment to go on forever. He wants to focus on things other than his recruitment this fall.

"I plan on making my decision before next season, in order to get it over this summer," Dobbs said. "That way I can play through my senior year without having to think about it."

Regardless, if Alabama is in the mix, that timetable is far from set. Dobbs said he would return to visit in the fall for a game, so long as he has an offer to play quarterback at Alabama.

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