Late Week Dream Game, St. Thomas Aquinas at Jesuit

Due to Covid issues with opponents, this game materialized on Wednesday night. We are glad that it did. Jesuit now faces a major early-season test against a national powerhouse.

Jesuit Tigers

2020 Record: 14-1 (Lost to eventual 5A State Champion American Heritage in 4th round 13-16)

Last Week: 35-0 win over Ocala West Port

Players to watch:

2024 QB Luke Knight – 5’10” 171 lbs

Knight went 15 for 18 for 239 yards and 3 touchdowns in Ocala last week. He completed 83% of his passes for an average of 15.9 yards per completion. He is a very efficient QB who manages the game extremely well. He has a handful of very well-coached receivers to distribute the ball to. Junior Vandeross and Carter French led the way in week one.


2023 RB Joquez Smith – 5’8” 190 lbs

Smith carried the ball 18 times for 176 yards and 1 touchdown in week one. At 9.8 yards per carry, he averaged just under a first down per touch. He totaled 1,444 yards and 18 touchdowns as a sophomore. Smith has quick feet and enough speed to break away. He makes defenders miss, but he doesn’t dance too much. He knows how to get north and south and get back on the fastest path to the end zone. With guys like Tre’quan Alexander blocking for him, he should have a great junior year.


2022 FS Caleb Williams – 5’11” 181 lbs

Williams is a fluid athlete with excellent closing speed, great ball skills, and a nose for the football. He led the Jesuit defense with 9 total tackles last week. As a junior, he had 125 tackles and 5 interceptions. Williams and Troy Bowles will lead a very solid unit this season. They posted a shutout in week one against an athletic West Port team.


St. Thomas Aquinas Raiders

2020 Record: 8-1 (STA won the 7A State Championship, their 12th overall)

Last week: 38-23 win over nationally ranked (13th) St. Francis Academy (MD)

Players to watch:

2022 QB Zion Turner – 6’2” 195 lbs

Turner was very productive in STA’s week one win against St. Francis. He completed 22 out of 33 passing attempts (67%) for 298 yards and 2 touchdowns and 1 interception. He also ran the ball 4 times for 40 yards and 1 touchdown. Turner is a well-rounded dual-threat QB. As a junior, he accounted for 1,272 yards and 16 touchdowns. He will blow those numbers out of the water this season.


2022 TE Mason Taylor – 6’4” 225 lbs

If week one was any indication, Taylor could very well be Turner’s favorite target this season. He caught 10 passes for 136 yards against St. Francis. He is a big target that moves well and has great hands. I like how STA moves him around to create mismatches. He runs great routes, and always hustles which keeps him alive as a safety valve for Turner when he leaves the pocket and extends plays. He possesses all the skills you look for in a legitimate tight end. Jesuit will want to know where he is lined up at all times on Friday night.


2023 SS King Mack – 5’10” 175 lbs

Mack helped lead the way for the STA defense in their win against St. Francis. He had 10 total tackles and 1 interception that he returned 65 yards. He is a high energy defender with great speed and physicality. Jordan Smith is cut from the same cloth so he deserves a shout-out also. Smith alsohad 10 tackles, and added 1 tackle for loss, 1 forced fumble, and 1 recovery. These two will continue to make plays all season for another nationally ranked STA team.