OK, he passed his high school eye test final. With ease. Not only does Brock Vandagriff possess the perfect name for a quarterback, he also just looks like the kind of guy you’d want as the prize of a recruiting class.

Monday at Georgia State’s downtown stadium, Vandagriff passed and ran Prince Avenue Christian (Bogart) to its first-ever state championship, the Wolverines easing past Trinity Christian (Sharpsburg), 41-21. He threw for 262 yards and two touchdowns. But maybe more impressively, for a guy wearing a brace on his right knee and has posterior cruciate ligament surgery pending, he was exceptionally nimble-footed. He rushed for another 76 yards and a touchdown. Most bodaciously, when a daring call to go for it on fourth-and-two on his own 38 demanded it, Vandagriff took off down one sideline and didn’t stop until 33 yards later.

His father, Prince Avenue coach Greg Vandagriff, said his 5-star son, one of the centerpieces of the Bulldogs’ signing class, would be at the doctor Tuesday assessing the knee. Brock said surgery was likely – but not before squeezing in a fishing trip with friends and family before reporting to UGA Jan. 10.

Maybe you knew about the arm. It’s been hyped to the heavens.

Maybe you even heard he had wheels, although they have been used a little more sparingly since Vandagriff suffered the knee injury at mid-season.

“I think I’m labeled somewhere as a dual-threat guy, but that kind of came to a halt this year,” Vandagriff said in the post-championship celebration Monday. “I’m ready to get back to it, back to my full 100%.”

But the toughness element, maybe you didn’t know that. For when it was time to take off and stretch out his legs in order to help deliver a title to share with his father in his final high school game – dad’s first in five years coaching at Prince Avenue – there wasn’t the slightest hesitation.

If you are a Georgia fan who hopes for big things from Vandagriff, this is what you want to hear from the possible leader of the Bulldogs’ huddle: “Since tearing it, I’ve kind of been babying it. Today, it was all out, all I had.”

Prince Avenue Christian quarterback Brock Vandagriff reacts after a touchdown in the second half of their 41-21 win against Trinity Christian during the Class 1A Private championship at Center Parc Stadium Monday, December 28, 2020 in Atlanta, Ga.. JASON GETZ FOR THE ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION
Prince Avenue Christian quarterback Brock Vandagriff reacts after a touchdown in the second half of their 41-21 win against Trinity Christian during the Class 1A Private championship at Center Parc Stadium Monday, December 28, 2020 in Atlanta, Ga.. JASON GETZ FOR THE ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION

Credit: Jason Getz

Credit: Jason Getz

If not for the specter of surgery, the kid would be coming to Georgia on a perfect high. What could be better than winning a state title, with your father as the coach?

“This was without a doubt one of the best days of my life. I’ve dreamed about it for a long time,” said the son.

“It’s hard to describe. On the bus ride to the game I was choking back emotions,” said the father.

It is the definition of a sucker to watch a high-value quarterback recruit sling the ball around in the championship game of Georgia’s smallest classification and envision the same kind of cavalcade of big plays against Florida some November soon.

It just doesn’t automatically translate; it’s like trying to convert Pig Latin into the real thing.

But on the same count, just because Vandagriff comes from a small school playing competition to scale, that doesn’t disqualify him from being the real deal in the lordly SEC. Herschel Walker, from tiny Wrightsville, forever countered that kind of talk.

Still, here I sat at Georgia State, admiring Vandagriff’s fine work as if it were really possible to look at the acorn and see the oak.

At 6-foot-3, 205 pounds, he appeared quite statuesque in the Michigan knock-off uniform of these Wolverines. Beneath his helmet flowed the Trevor Lawrence starter-kit ‘do. Only these long locks are red, befitting a Georgia man.

Yes, the passing was more than passable. Bulldog fans will be heartened to know their team did not recruit an underfed young’un who throws a football with two hands.

Prince Avenue Christian quarterback Brock Vandagriff (12) attempts a pass in the first half against Trinity Christian during the Class 1A Private championship at Center Parc Stadium Monday, December 28, 2020 in Atlanta, Ga.. JASON GETZ FOR THE ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION
Prince Avenue Christian quarterback Brock Vandagriff (12) attempts a pass in the first half against Trinity Christian during the Class 1A Private championship at Center Parc Stadium Monday, December 28, 2020 in Atlanta, Ga.. JASON GETZ FOR THE ATLANTA JOURNAL-CONSTITUTION

Credit: Jason Getz

Credit: Jason Getz

The guy spins a pretty ball. He can throw it on a line that would make a laser level jealous – see the Monday strike to Jake Pittman running to the post, never breaking stride on a 45-yard touchdown play.

And he clearly grasps the graceful geometry of the most subtle pass – in Monday’s case an arcing throw to the corner of the end zone, 19 yards to Logan Johnson.

He throws it sometimes with too much authority for this level. His lone interception Monday came with Prince Avenue at the doorstep to a touchdown early in the second quarter. Vandagriff’s a-little-too-hot-for-high-school pass bounced off the intended receiver and into Trinity hands. That may well be a score in the SEC, but it was a painful interception in the Georgia Class A Private finals.

“That was my fault,” Vandagriff said, also showing an early aversion to the alibi.

He throws it so well that throwing for 262 yards Monday was a little bit of a comedown, below his usual output. The result healed all that.

Such a talent comes with no guarantees once the surgeon has his say and Vandagriff settles into Kirby Smart’s kingdom. But it is a talent that invites unreasonable expectation.

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