September 8, 2010
Heritage sophomore gets on coaches' radar
While sophomores tend not to get a lot of publicity before starting a high school contest, Heritage High School's Ryan Novak has created a stir with his efforts on the camp circuit this summer.
"I knew for the coaches and around the school, it was a big deal with a sophomore starting," said Novak. "I just kind of played, did my thing and showed them I was ready to be in that starting varsity position."
And that he did. In a 29-22 loss to Lakewood on Friday, Novak completed 22-of-39 passes for 368 yards. He passed for three touchdowns and one interception.
"The game went really good," said Novak. "We did a lot of really good things. We just had some mental breakdowns, but we played really good. The outcome just wasn't what we wanted."
The 6-foot-5, 235-pound quarterback claims a 5.3 time in the 40-yard dash and is already taking steps to graduate a semester early and get on a college campus to compete for a job.
"He has an excellent arm and is improving his mobility," said Heritage Coach Mike Griebel. "He just needs live reps. Our quarterbacks coach KC Enzminger is very confident in him."
Griebel, the father of current Air Force football team member and former Heritage quarterback Mitch Griebel, said Novak had a strong scrimmage against Fort Collins two weeks ago and the 15-year-old Novak is nearing 6-foot-6 inches tall.
This weekend Heritage will take on Cherokee Trail.
Last summer Novak racked up the miles attending football camps in Denver, California, Indiana and had an invite to attend another one in Virginia at some of the top schools in the nation. He said he camped at UCLA, USC, Purdue, Colorado State and an Elite Camp in San Diego. That has helped him get on college recruiters' radar.
"I learned not to get a big head from everything," Novak said when asked what he learned this summer. "Once it happened, it happened. Not to forget about it, but don't look back on it and say, 'this happened over the summer and I am so great.' That kind of stuff."
Novak said he wants to find a college that fits his style of play, which he seems as more of a throwing quarterback who isn't asked to run as much. He said there are plenty of pro-set offenses available to him.
"I would say USC has shown the most interest," Novak said. "I went to their camp and they invited me to their Elite quarterback camp next year. I've been in contact with the quarterback coach there every other week. That has been good to keep in contact with them.
"CSU has been showing a lot of interest. I had the camp there and that was supposed to be only for kids who were going to be Juniors and Seniors, but they moved me up to the Seniors. They have kept me on their radar. CU has sent me a questionnaire and that is about it."
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