NATCHITOCHES â€“ Chris Garrett, one of the more highly-regarded high school quarterbacks in the country in the 2009 recruiting class, has signed scholarship papers with Northwestern State and is transferring from LSU to play for the Demons, head coach Bradley Dale Peveto confirmed Wednesday.
Garrett, a 6-foot-4, 220-pound product of Tupelo (Miss.) High School, is eligible to play immediately as a redshirt freshman with four seasons available. He was a redshirt last year at LSU.
He will officially report with 89 other Demons Sunday afternoon and will go through his first practice in Turpin Stadium Monday morning as NSU kicks off its second preseason camp under Peveto, an LSU assistant coach from 2005-2008.
â€œChris is a very good quarterback, and in our philosophy in recruiting, we try to recruit the best possible athletes as we can in a position,â€ said Peveto. â€œIf youâ€™ve got four good ones at one position, why not have five.â€
Northwestern has two returning lettermen at quarterback, senior Tyler Wolfe and true sophomore Paul Harris, who started the last four games last season and is a second-team Preseason All-Southland Conference selection.
â€œRight now, Chris will come in and have to work his way up the depth chart. Weâ€™ve got some good quarterbacks that are here and weâ€™ve been very honest with them,â€ said Peveto. â€œThey have all agreed that if we could get Chris, then get him. Weâ€™re proud to have him.â€
After a record-shattering senior season at Tupelo High, Garrett was named to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Super Southern 100 and was rated as a three-star prospect by Rivals.com and Scout.com analysts. He was ranked as the nationâ€™s No. 16 pro-style quarterback in the 2009 signing class by Rivals.com, while Scout.com ranked him as the No. 28 quarterback prospect in the country. SuperPrep ranked him as the No. 9 overall recruiting prospect in the state of Mississippi, while Rivals.com listed him as No. 11 overall in his home state.
Garrett was described in the LSU media guide last year as â€œa classic pro-style quarterback with a big arm.â€ His written scholarship offers as a high school senior came from LSU, Florida State, Ole Miss, Mississippi State and Nebraska.
He was a three-year starter for coach Eric Collins at Tupelo, earning all-region honors each year, and was second-team all-state and first-team all-area as a senior. In 2008, he completed 127 of 220 passes for 1,901 yards and 22 touchdowns, and also ran for six scores.
In his first year as a starter, Garrett threw for 1,478 yards and nine touchdowns while completing 88 of 184 passes. In his sophomore season, he won recognition as â€œstate top performer of the weekâ€ from the Jackson Clarion-Ledger along with earning all-region honors.
As a junior in 2007, he repeated the â€œperformer of the weekâ€ award from the Clarion-Ledger while earning first-team all-region honors and being named his teamâ€™s offensive Most Valuable Player.
He set school career records for passing yards, completions and touchdown passes as a senior, when he was a team captain and repeated as offensive MVP.
Garrett was named to the Clarion-Ledgerâ€™s â€œDandy Dozenâ€ list in 2008 as one of the stateâ€™s top 12 prep football stars. He represented Tupelo High in the STAR Sportsmanship â€œCharacter Countsâ€ program.
He was named to the Overall Top 60 Prospects at the Army All-American Combine in San Antonio in 2008, and made the Overall Top 2 at the Under Armour/Scout Combine in Mobile, Ala., in January 2008. He made the EA Sports Elite 11 Camp â€œTop 10â€ in 2008, was the first-team quarterback at the Southeast Select/Scout Combine, and was a nominee for the Joe Montana Quarterback of the Year Award as a senior.
Garrett was chosen to play in the Mississippi/Alabama All-Star Football Classic, and played on the West team in the Offense/Defense All-American Bowl where he was a nominee for the Quarterback of the Year award.
He quarterbacked his team to 7-on-7 passing camp championships at Ole Miss and Mississippi State (twice), and to a championship game appearance at LSU. Garrett also attended the renowned Manning Passing Academy hosted by Archie, Peyton, Eli and Cooper Manning in Thibodaux.
He is a cousin of PGA Tour golf star David Toms of Shreveport, and his paternal grandmother was born and raised in Bienville Parish. He is the second of three sons of David and Felicia Garrett of Tupelo.
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