Two years ago, I sat at a friend's Memorial Day barbecue, enjoying the usual fare. Burgers, dogs, beer, the list goes on. As I we stuffed our faces, the subject of Norman North football was brought up. Someone that was attending the party had a son that played on the team, and we talked about three things.
1. Wade Stanley, and the tremendous job he had done during the 2012 season.
2. Jordan Evans; the recent Oklahoma commit and all-state linebacker.
3. David Cornwell; the highly touted future Alabama Crimson Tide commit.
Norman North was coming off its best season ever, finishing runner up to Jenks in the state title game. Jordan Evans had just committed to the University of Oklahoma, and Head Coach Wade Stanley was taking Norman North in a direction it had never fathomed. Norman North was on the brink of becoming a perennial power, like Tulsa Union, and Jenks.
All because of the hype surrounding one David Cornwell, the transfer from Jones, Oklahoma. Cornwell was a Rivals.com 5-star recruit, and the number one quarterback in the state, and number one pocket passer in the country. That was reason enough to give folks in Norman reason to believe that it was destined for another run at the golden ball.
This one kid, was supposed to catapult Norman North back into the championship contention, even after losing 14 starters to graduation.
The hype would soon fade. Norman North would lose its opening game against rival Norman High, while Cornwell would spend most of the game on his back. Cornwell took hit after hit, due to an inexperienced offensive line. Though he would show moments of what he was capable of, and why he was headed to Alabama to play football, Cornwell's season would end after two games. Cornwell tore his ACL.
Enter John Kolar, the unheard of junior that helped salvage another district championship with such a young squad.
John Kolar, now a senior has committed to Oklahoma State, and presents Norman North with yet another FBS caliber quarterback. A quarterback that is destined to compete for a job at what has been one of the most consistent, high octane offenses in the country, under Mike Gundy.
Pokes rejoice, John Kolar looks to be the real deal.
What separates Kolar from Cornwell is his mobility. Listed at 6-3, 195 pounds, Kolar is described as a dual threat, pro-style quarterback with 3-stars attached to his name.
Kolar has thrown for touchdowns of 20, 33, 48, and 52 yards this season, everyone being prettier than the last. Kolar's arm strength is notable, hitting receivers in stride. His ability to throw on the run, uncanny.
Similar to former Oklahoma State QB Clint Chelf, Kolar has a tendency to rifle passes on the the run, leaving little arc on the ball. Though deep routes have been a point of emphasis for him this season, Kolar excels in quick, underneath routes, slants, and screens. What makes him scarier is that his deep game is coming into play at the right time.
With opponents such as Westmoore, Tulsa Union, and Owasso all looming on the schedule, Norman North will have to find a way to win one-on-one matchups, and Kolar gives the Timberwolves that chance.
Though he completed less than 50% of his passes last week against Yukon, Kolar was spectacular to start the game, going a perfect 5/5, hitting everything that moved, even threading the needle a couple of times. He was even better in week one against Norman High, throwing for almost 300 yards and three TDs.
Kolar is finding his game with the deep ball, with a young core of receivers at his disposal, and that's what is really fun to watch. Kolar is not a project quarterback. His development is evolving and that should give Oklahoma State fans excitement. Because when the day his name finally comes to fruition in a quarterback battle in the future, Kolar's game might be a well oiled machine, and that is scary.
Kolar is not a game manager like Cornwell was. John Kolar is a gamer, and an exciting one at that.
With how tough his future schedule is, Watch Kolar and Norman North this season. How he fares against the best in this state could prove a great indicator of this kid's moxie.