Wednesday, April 3, 2013
Coach talk: QB Jack Seymour
By Josh Moyer
What kind of player is Penn State getting in preferred walk-on Jack Seymour? And what can fans expect from the player who turned down several scholarships?
NittanyNation turned to one of the people who knows most what the headliner of this run-on class is capable of on the field -- Orlando Lowry, a former NFL player and Seymour's high school coach at Indianapolis (Ind.) Park Tudor -- and asked what separates him as a player, how he first noticed Seymour's ability and when he especially showcase his potential.
Lowry became the coach only in Feb. 2012, but he attended all of the games before his hiring since his daughter was a cheerleader at the school.
QB Jack Seymour, Indianapolis (Ind.) Park Tudor, 6-foot-2, 201 pounds
Lowry, on what separates Seymour from others at his position: "He makes very good, difficult passes, so that really got me excited. He can make all the throws, so that's a really good starting point for the team. Park Tudor is a small school, so we don't have a lot of depth, but once I got there and saw his work ethic, I was very pleased.
"He's a leader. He's a guy that when they didn't have a coach, he and Grant Geddie got the team together and went to workouts off campus. And when I came in, they believed what we were telling them. He was a very strong leader as far as keeping the team together; you like to see that in your quarterback. As the year went on and I got to know him better, I realized he just had everything you would want. He was tough physically, he lifts like a linebacker, and he's not scared to pull a ball down and just run and take on people. ... He was tough in a Tim Tebow-kind of mold, so I was very encouraged."
When he first knew Seymour would be special: "Well, we just don't produce too many football players. They played a team called Guerin Catholic -- they went on to win the state title that year -- and, his sophomore year, Jack came out of nowhere and had a great game. We won that game against a very good team, and it wasn't expected. That was the very first game of that year. And he made some big plays and very nice drives, so I knew.
"From a personnel standpoint, he grew up in a position where he was running for his life most of the time -- really, just running for his life. So he had to make plays on the run. So I saw this guy who has a skill, a dropback quarterback who really threw the ball and made all the passes but at the same time, because of necessity, was able to roll out and scramble and make the play down the field. I don't know if you've seen his highlight film -- but there's a lot of that. Where he's scrambling for his life, and then he'll make a 30- or 40-yard touchdown strike. So I saw that vision. He's a type of kid that, given the opportunity to have a great coach in college -- which he'll get at Penn State -- with great receivers and a great line, the sky's the limit."
When Seymour surprised him or really showcased his ability: "Well, he exceeded expectations really that first week of practice. I was standing on the field and when he was whizzing the ball -- zoooom -- that was very encouraging. I looked at our coordinator and said, 'I think we're going to be OK.' As far as games, we had a game against Lutheran, and it was a 50-43 [loss], and every time they would score, he would drive it down the field.
"Again, our school is not a football power. Traditionally, it's a school that produces state titles in tennis. And in previous years, from my observation, we didn't fight has hard as we should. And it was just encouraging to see him not give in. We went [against] a very good team, and we fought. We came very, very close to winning. I know there's not any moral victories, but I was encouraged by that game. Seymour was teaching them to fight there; he was one of the leaders of that team."