This time last year, Jaden Mitzel was a just sophomore getting a feel for the quarterback position.
“When the season started, it was hard for him just to call a play in the huddle,” head coach Funnon Barker said.
Mitzel says he was nervous for the first few weeks, but he learned how to handle to demands of the job.
“You’ve got to take responsibility for everything. If it’s a fumbled snap, it’s your problem. If it’s a fumbled handoff, it’s your fault,” Mitzel said.
But by the end of the year, he was as comfortable as could be.
“There was a ton of growth throughout the year,” Barker said. “I thought his ability to throw the ball and make reads to throw to the right guy really improved as the season went on. And it allowed us to throw the ball more.”
Mitzel broke several school records last year, but he says he still has to work as as a quarterback, which is why he went to so many football camps this summer.
“Quick step drops, how to throw the ball quicker on routes. How to have better footwork, mainly,” Mitzel said.
And all of this hard work is to make sure his team’s not on the losing side of another Dakota Bowl.
“My mom has a picture of my brother catching my first touchdown pass [in the Dakota Bowl.] I look at that almost every day and it haunts me,” Mitzel said.
The Skyhawks continue their training camp this week.