Lake Braddock QB Billy Edwards (Photo: Sheridan King/recruitNoVA)
Billy Edwards, Jr. has become a player to watch
by Marc Goldstein, recruitNoVA
Billy Edwards Jr, rising senior quarterback for the Lake Braddock Bruins has been vaulting up recruiting boards in the state of Virginia this Spring, and with his recent announcement that he was narrowing his interest to 13 schools, the intrigue grows.
The schools include East Carolina, Florida International University, James Madison, Kent State, Liberty, UMass, Miami University (OH), Ohio University, Old Dominion, Toledo, Western Michigan, William and Mary, and Yale University. His raw skills and athleticism set him apart from his competition, and his 3 star rating reflects his talent.
Growing up with his dad coaching high school football for 32 years, Edwards (2021 QB 6-3 190) grew up under the Friday Night Lights, watching his brothers and friends all go on to play college football. He made it his dream to follow in their footsteps and to play at the next level as well.
“Growing up, watching my brother and a bunch of the older guys play in high school and then go onto college ball has always been fun to watch and had always been something I’ve hoped for, and now I’m getting the opportunity to live my dream and play the game I love so much,” Billy explains.
He believes that his biggest asset that he brings to the table is his football IQ and knowledge of the game. This makes sense considering his father is a coach and Billy has been around the game this much. He prides himself on being good in the film room and knowing what the defenses are going to throw at him. “I just want to get better on learning when to escape and when to sit in the pocket and make the throw,” Billy says.
With 13 teams currently in the running to land Billy’s talent, it is safe to say that each school brings exciting opportunities with them. All of the schools are Division I, with vibrant football cultures at each campus. For Billy, he thinks that the decision he makes, no matter what it is, will be the right decision because each of the schools presents a different, exciting challenge to him.
He explains, “Each school has their own unique opportunity from playing in state and rebuilding the program at ODU, or competing for a National Championship with JMU, or even playing at Kent State, Miami(OH), Ohio, or Toledo and playing on Tuesday nights in the MAC(Mid-American Conference). These schools all have great opportunities, so I just have to figure out what is best for me.”
When one thinks of football, the first thing that comes to mind for all fans, is the quarterback.
While there are cases that teams have won without elite quarterback play, Billy thinks that it is up to him to elevate his teammates in any way he can. He wants to be the guy that all his teammates can go to for help, no matter what it is, saying, “I think playing the quarterback position means automatically you’ll be put into a position of leadership… so throughout this process, I’m just trying to help out my teammates that may have started it and just leading by example in everything I do whether it be on the field or in the classroom.”.
Being a quarterback is important on the field, there is no doubt about that, but the difference between a good quarterback and a great quarterback, no matter the level of play, is the level of leadership they possess.
Take a player like Tom Brady for example, he is 42 years old and may not have quite as much to offer as Patrick Mahomes or Lamar Jackson, but he is still considered elite because of the way he elevates his teammates and leads them by example. That isn’t to say Billy is the next Tom Brady because who knows what the future holds, but every quarterback can learn something from everyone around them as to how to successfully lead a team.
As Billy Edwards, Jr. continues his recruiting process, it will become clear as to what he wants in a college football program and what he values. For now, though, he is focused on his upcoming season and proving to all the colleges that he is worth their interest level and then some. Billy Edwards Jr. will be a name to watch for Virginia recruiters, and he is hoping that he Marc is a name to watch for NFL scouts in the years to come.
– Marc Goldstein