Rider (Wichita Falls, TX) dual-threat quarterback Jacob Rodriguez is the newest member of #THEStandard21, also known as Virginia football’s recruiting class of 2021. The 6’2”, 210-pound signal caller – the Red River 22 Large-School MVP in 2019 – announced his commitment to the Cavaliers Monday (April 27) morning.
— Jacob Rodriguez (@Jacob_R_10) April 27, 2020
“First and foremost, I would like to thank God for the ability to play the game I love and for the opportunities He has given me,” Rodriguez wrote in the tweet above. “I want to thank all of my past and present coaches who have helped me become the player I am. I would like to thank all of the schools who showed interest and for the great relationships we have built throughout this recruiting process. I want to thank my brothers and teammates for pushing me to become the best person and athlete I could possibly be. I would not be here without y’all. Lastly, I want to thank my parents for everything they have done to help me reach my goals and for being my toughest critics yet my biggest supporters. I love you guys.
“With that being said, I am extremely excited to announce that I am committed to the University of Virginia!!”
With Rodriguez and Benedictine (Richmond, VA) standout Jay Woolfolk in the fold, Virginia now boasts two dual-threat quarterbacks in 2021. Rising redshirt sophomore Brennan Armstrong, rising redshirt junior Lindell Stone, and class of 2020 recruit Ira Armstead, who enrolled on Grounds in January, are the only other sure-fire scholarship quarterbacks projected on the roster in 2021.
Rodriguez is rated by 247Sports as a 3-star prospect and the no. 18 dual-threat quarterback in the nation in his class. Rivals ranks him as a 3-star prospect at the pro-style quarterback position. The Rider star has certainly demonstrated the ability to produce as a passer and a runner. He finished his junior season with 3,003 yards passing, 33 touchdowns and eight interceptions while completing 57.8% of his passes. Rodriguez added 1,247 yards rushing and 16 touchdowns, averaging 8.4 yards per carry.
— Robert Anae (@CoachAnae) April 27, 2020
— Jason Beck (@Coach_Beck7) April 27, 2020
“He’s a tough kid to prep for,” Wichita Falls head coach Grant Freeman said of Rodriguez, who led Rider to regular season and playoff victories over WFHS last season. Freeman provided these comments to Wichita Falls Times Record News reporter Jonathan Hull in this article. “We prepped for a first-team all-state receiver in the first round and shut him down. You can’t prep for a kid that can throw it and run it like he can – a kid who competes as hard as he does.”
Rider finished the 2019 season with a 9-5 record. In addition to the Red River MVP honor, Rodriguez also earned District 3-5A Division II Co-MVP honors for his junior season performance. He garnered significant FBS interest, ultimately choosing UVA over offers from in-state programs such as Baylor, Houston, and Texas Tech, as well as out-of-state programs such as Indiana, Iowa State and San Diego State, among others.
EDGE Outlook: Virginia Football’s Class Of 2021
Virginia football now boasts eight 2021 Class verbal commitments, three of whom have come on board within the last six days. All signs point to more high school juniors coming into the fold this week, such as Lafayette (Williamsburg, VA) linebacker/athlete Michael Green, who told 247Sports last week that he plans on announcing this Thursday. There could be more, though, judging by today’s Twitter activity from UVA assistant coaches, so stay tuned.
As I mentioned above, UVA now has two quarterback commitments in the class in Rodriguez and Woolfolk. Both fit the dual-threat mold Mendenhall wants at the position. Both prospects also pack a punch on the defensive side of the ball. The first player who came to my mind watching Rodriguez’ highlights was UNC quarterback-turned-linebacker Chazz Surratt. Make no mistake, both Rodriguez and Woolfolk are being recruited as quarterbacks.
Rodriguez is a punishing runner with the speed to break big plays. He reminds me of Bryce Perkins in terms of the strength and toughness with which he runs. Perkins was known for his dynamic ability, but he was a stronger runner too. Rodriguez’ arm looks good based on his highlights, and he was very productive in the pass game, averaging 15 yards per completion.
Virginia is probably finished with quarterback recruiting in 2021. Mendenhall and company are no doubt very pleased with the haul, which includes two very good prospects who fit the “Thorterback” mold.
– Jesiah Davis, Wide Receiver, Providence Day (Charlotte, N.C.)
– Malachi Fields, Athlete, Monticello (Charlottesville, VA)
– Amaad Foston, Running Back, John Milledge Academy (Milledgeville, GA)
– Langston Long, Safety/Linebacker, Christ School (Arden, N.C.)
– Josh McCarron, Outside Linebacker, Archbishop Murphy (Everett, WA)
– Jacob Rodriguez, Dual-Threat Quarterback, Rider (Wichita Falls, TX)
– William Simpkins III, Defensive Back, Quince Orchard (Gaithersburg, MD)
– Jay Woolfolk, Dual-Threat Quarterback, Benedictine (Richmond, VA)