[caption id="attachment_291549" align="alignnone" width="1508"] (Photo: © @kaiyasheron2)
Recruiting truly never stops and UK proved that by picking up their fourth pledge
in the class of 2021 on Monday night when Somerset quarterback Kaiya Sheron announced that he will continue his playing career in Lexington. This past season, Sheron led the Briar Jumpers to their first KHSAA state title with a thrilling 34-31 win over Mayfield at Kroger Field.
Sheron is currently a mid three-star recruit who completed 68.5 percent of his passes last year while averaging a robust 12.38 yards per attempt with 28 touchdowns and an interception rate of just 1.9 percent. He also led the team in rushing with 959 yards on 114 carries (8.4 yards per pop) with eight touchdowns. He was the Somerset offense and in the end picked Kentucky over Marshall while visiting Louisville, Michigan State and West Virginia.
Now it's time to step into the KSR Film Room and show you just what Darin Hinshaw is adding to his quarterback room. For the second class in a row, UK landed the state of Kentucky's top high school quarterback and there are some tools Sheron possesses that will give him a great chance to succeed at the next level.
The first thing you need to know about Sheron when beginning his quarterback evaluation is that this guy is an athlete. The 6-foot-3 and 195-pound quarterback is a legit player on Somerset's basketball team and could play receiver or safety at a high level if called upon. He has been clocked at 4.8 in the forty-yard dash and his running numbers show a player with playmaking potential with his legs. That shows up on tape.
Over the last five years or so we've seen the quarterback position totally change. Gone are the days of 6-foot-5 pocket quarterbacks who throw on platform and slice up defenses with smarts and big time arm talent. In now are quarterbacks who can make defenses respect their running ability and make throws off script by moving around and using creativity when called upon. Sheron checks that box.
However, you do still need to make throws in traditional ways. Most importantly, you have to be able challenge defenses vertically down the field. Sheron has that ability.
The one thing you cannot do when throwing a go-route is overthrow your target. You have to give your receiver a shot at making the catch and that is what happens on the chunk play. In what appears to be a cover 2 look from the defense, Sheron has a window between the corner and safety and he hits it. You would like to see him release the ball a bit sooner, but he puts it in the perfect spot and the wideout comes away with a competitive catch for the explosive play.
When you are a quarterback that moves around in the pocket and relies on your legs, you still need to keep your eyes down the field to make throws when the defense overreacts. You also have to have a feel for the game with instincts of stuff that may be going on around you that you can't really see.
On the designed roll to the left, Sheron feels the backside pressure and does a really good job pivoting out of trouble. He immediately gets his eyes up and finds a receiver wide open for a touchdown. This is the type of playmaking ability that is required to succeed at the next level.
Sheron does not have the biggest arm, but he has a very quick release and delivers the ball with accuracy very consistently. You do not need a bazooka arm to be a big time quarterback as long as you aren't afraid to pull the pin to put the ball into tight intermediate windows and can accurately deliver the ball vertically.
When you are looking for a modern day quarterback prospect, Kaiya Sheron checks a lot of boxes. He has the tools (size, athleticism and accuracy) to succeed at the position. He does not have the biggest arm and will have to prove he can make the same plays against much more speed at a higher level, but there is a lot to like about the 2021 recruit.
Sheron's recruiting background is a bit strange as his tape shows someone who should have multiple Power Five offers. However, Kentucky is the only one to jump in the ring and they have secured a quarterback commitment before the end of March. He is set to step into a program looking up to Joey Gatewood and fellow Kentuckian Beau Allen, but the chance to start could be there after a couple years of sitting.