Caleb Holstein was St. Thomas More's starting quarterback in 2018 and 2019. While he broke almost every school record, a young Walker Howard watched in the wings. Then 2020 became his turn.
"It was just one of those years I was waiting for so long," said Howard. "That's what made me have a great year."
Calling Howard's debut only a great year would be underselling it. As a junior, he threw for over 3,000 yards, with 35 touchdowns to only four interceptions. He was first team all state in class 4A, and, oh yeah, he led the Cougars to their first undefeated state championship.
"It was an unbelievable experience. Finishing with an undefeated state championship meant a lot."
Howard is committed to LSU and for many, that came as no surprise, as he's following in the family business. His dad, Jamie Howard, was the Tigers QB from 1992-95, and he serves as Walker's biggest fan and coach.
"After a bad play would happen. We would breakdown what's happening in the stands. Speed up my feet, get to my reads quicker. I look up to him because he handles everything the best way," said Walker.
The next challenge for the 5-star recruit is balling with a new core of receivers that will not include All-American Jack Bech, who is off to LSU.
"He's going to have a lot of new faces around him. I think his leadership skills have blossomed this year," STM Head Coach Jim Hightower said.
But the only way to truly outdo last season is to reach the Division 2 mountaintop again.
"Topping is winning another state championships. Guys are saying we're not going to be as good as last year. We're losing a lot of guys but hey, pressure is on me and I'm ready to go."
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