Louisville fans got a good look at Jawon Pass in today's US Army All-American Bowl. The 6'5 quarterback commitment displayed all of the physical characteristics that made him so highly sought after on the recruiting trail while also showing that he's got work to do in terms of raw passing mechanics. Pass led his East squad to its only touchdown of the game. The West squad was victorious 37-9.
Here's a look at Pass' touchdown run on a simple option play inside the red zone.
If you saw any of what Louisville did with its offense and Lamar Jackson, it's easy to see how it fits the strengths Jawon Pass has and showed today. Pass is elusive, quick, and quite a bit bigger than even Lamar Jackson. For that reason, in addition to the option stuff we saw all, I wouldn't be shocked to see Louisville eventually work in more designed lead runs and quarterback power plays and not just pure option stuff that gets the quarterback on the edge.
Pass drew some praise from scouts and recruiting writers on that drive.
Liked what I saw from Louisville QB commit Jawon Pass on that drive. Great throw on 4th, then runs in the TD. #ArmyBowl— Max Olson (@max_olson) January 9, 2016
Pass also threw the ball fairly well. Here's his best throw of the game. On 4th and 11 he hits a very nice completion
Solid Pass...pass...on 4th and 11. pic.twitter.com/Adapx3sEm0— Mark Ennis (@MarkEnnis) January 9, 2016
None of the East teams quarterbacks set the world on fire today. After a week of hearing that Pass was so far behind Jacob Eason and Felippe Franks, Pass played as well as either of them today. In fact, Pass was the only East quarterback (to throw more than one pass and) hit more than 50% of his throws.
Pass is nowhere near a finished product. Especially as a pure passer. When he gets to Louisville he will probably have to do much of what Lamar Jackson did: Learn to recognize basic fronts and coverages, improve his footwork, improve his throwing motion so that his throws are basically the same throw every time. Things like that. Additionally, he's big and be much, much bigger. I wouldn't be shocked at all to see him 6'5, 240 by the time he's Louisville's quarterback.
For several reasons, Pass coming to Louisville is about as ideal of a situation as either Louisville or Pass could ask for. First, Petrino and Garrick McGee will get to work out the kinks of transitioning to more of a mobile quarterback/option style attack in the remaining Lamar Jackson years. When Pass takes over, they'll have worked out the scheme and be far more comfortable calling plays in it as an overall attack.
Second, Pass will have plenty of time to simply observe and grow. Ideally, a redshirt season and then spot duty in the following years would allow Pass to play behind Jackson, put on weight, learn, overhaul the way he throws the ball, and adjust to the college game before ever being forced into full time action.