Once thought to be the clear leader for junior college quarterback Zack Stoudt, the Kansas University football program appears to have company.
Kyle Veazey, the Ole Miss beat writer for the Clarion-Ledger, Tweeted on Wednesday that Stoudt’s coach at Iowa Western Community College told him that a recent visit with Ole Miss head coach Houston Nutt brought the Rebels into a tie with the Jayhawks.
Here’s the meat of Veazey’s Tweet:
“Juco QB Zack Stoudt’s coach says Nutt/Rader visit earlier this wk was big. ‘Kansas was a front-runner. Now it’s really Kansas and Ole Miss.’”
Stoudt, a 6-foot-5, 225-pound pro-style QB from Dublin, Ohio, is expected to make a decision in the next few days so he can enroll at his new school in time for the spring semester.
Sources have told the Journal-World that he plans to sign Wednesday and likely will make his decision before then, perhaps as early as Sunday.
After Stoudt’s recent visit with Nutt and Ole Miss quarterbacks coach Dave Rader, Chase Parham of RebelGrove.com reported Thursday that KU and Ole Miss were Stoudt’s favorites. The two Ole Miss coaches met with Stoudt for a couple of hours on Monday and then flew to Ohio to have dinner with his parents that night.
Kansas coach Turner Gill and offensive coordinator Chuck Long followed suit the next day and dined with the Stoudts on Tuesday night.
Despite the recent progress made by Ole Miss, Stoudt remains upbeat about Kansas.
“Coach Long, the QB coach at Kansas, is a great guy,” Stoudt told Parham. “We got along well. He played in the NFL the same time my dad did. Turner Gill is a class act. The visit was fantastic. The players believe in the system and coaching staff.”
Stoudt’s father, Cliff, is a former NFL quarterback, who was the back-up to Pittsburgh Steelers great Terry Bradshaw for six seasons before starting for one. Stoudt’s younger brother, Cole, recently committed to Clemson.
One note of interest pointed out by RebelGrove on Thursday was that Stoudt’s parents are leaving the decision in their son’s hands.
“My parents think both (KU and Ole Miss) staffs are very genuine and are comfortable with both,” Stoudt told Parham.
Stoudt will make his official visit to Ole Miss this weekend. He told Parham that he may make a decision on the plane ride home.
“Obviously, this weekend is huge,” Stoudt said.
Last weekend, Stoudt capped his junior-college career with a record-setting performance in a loss to Snow College (which produced current KU quarterback Quinn Mecham) in the Top of the Mountains Bowl in Sandy, Utah. He completed 39 of 76 passes for a bowl-record 440 yards in the loss.
Rivals.com currently lists Stoudt, who originally committed to Louisville out of high school, as the No. 2-ranked juco quarterback in the nation.