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PREP FOOTBALL: Riley Scruggs tabbed Newton's newest gunslinger
Riley Scruggs (16) was recently announced as the Newton Rams' starting quarterback by head coach Camiel Grant Jr. The announcement came following a long, thorough quarterback competition this offseason. - photo by Phillip B. Hubbard

COVINGTON, Ga. — One big question has been looming around Newton football since the end of last season: Who is going to be the Rams’ quarterback in 2022? 

Well, after a long, thorough quarterback competition this offseason, head coach Camiel Grant Jr., has handed the reins over to Riley Scruggs. 

Being the Rams’ starter is a dream come true for Scruggs. 

“I’ve been dreaming about it since I was a freshman and I’m excited about [being the quarterback],” Scruggs said. “I’ve been putting in work since my freshman season and now it’s finally showing. And being out here playing at Sharp on Friday nights means everything to me.” 

Scruggs took all the snaps at quarterback Friday night during Newton’s scrimmage against Columbia High School. In his outing, Scruggs went 3-for-11 with 98 yards passing, four rushing yards and a touchdown pass. 

Overall, Grant was pleased with the junior’s performance under center. 

“He did exactly what we have been asking him to do over these last two to three weeks,” Grant said. “He had a pretty good command of where to go with the football. He did not disappoint at all.”

Scruggs’ final statistics line featured a few drops by Rams receivers and a near 60-yard touchdown pass to junior Marcus Calwise. As a matter of fact, two of Scruggs’ three completions were to the junior wideout. 

The Scruggs-Calwise connection on the field is a resemblance of their relationship off the field, too. 

“That’s my guy,” Scruggs said of Calwise. “We always have a great time at practice and a great connection. Our timing is really good and I’m very excited to play with him this season.” 

A two-headed running attack helps make being the starting quarterback easier, too, for Scruggs. 

Zion Johnson and Kweli Deloach carried the bulk of the rushing game for the Rams in Friday’s scrimmage. Scruggs highlighted the two running backs’ impact on Newton’s offense. 

“With Zion and Kweli, they’re great running backs and I’m very blessed having them on my team and go through this season to see what they can do,” Scruggs said. 

All in all, Scruggs stressed how he felt comfortable being QB1 for the Rams heading into the 2022 season. He’s hoping that his and his teammates’ play will help propel Newton into a monumental season. 

That’s the only expectation Scruggs has placed on himself and the Rams in 2022. 

“I just want to be the best version of ourselves that we can be,” Scruggs said. “I’ve seen glimpses of it. We can be great this year and I’m excited to see it. And that’s what really motivates me.”