By JOSH FRYE
When looking for football players, coaches often want to find that one diamond in the rough. They generally want that one player who stands out from the rest and can make huge statements for an entire team.
For Escambia County High School head football coach Scott Mason, that player is incoming senior Jacob Hammac. Mason coached Hammac at Florala High School for the past two seasons and will add a third at ECHS.
At 6-1, 208 pounds, Hammac is not the biggest quarterback around. But, according to Mason, he could have the strongest arm.
In 2017, as starting quarterback at Florala High School, the sophomore signal-caller completed 202 of 348 pass attempts, totaled 2,569 yards and 27 touchdowns and threw just 11 interceptions. His 57-percent completion rate, at an average of 12.7 yards per completion, was the fifty-third best in Alabama high school history.
His numbers, however, didn’t stop there.
In 2018, again as starting quarterback under Mason at Florala, Hammac completed 238 of 383 pass attempts, totaled 3,036 yards and 26 touchdowns, with 16 interceptions. His pass-completion rate (62 percent) and an average of 12.6 yards per completion represented the thirty-fifth best in Alabama high school history.
Hammac received All-State first-team honors as a junior last year and earned second team honors in 2017.
Mason said the new ECHS quarterback is considered one of the best passing quarterbacks in the state, following behind only Auburn’s Bo Nix and Alabama’s Taulia Tagovailoa.
“Jacob is a great kid,” said Mason. “He knows what to do and when to do it. He can read any play or coverage situation that is thrown at him.”
According to Mason, Hammac is not only a force on the field, but in the classroom as well.
With high scores on his ACTs, Mason explained that Hammack has huge dreams and that many doors will offer an opportunity to be opened.
“Coach Mason is a father to me,” Hammac said. “He is a great guy and coach, and I wanted to play my senior year for him. I didn’t want to play for any other coach, and I wanted the chance to play more competitive football. ECHS and Mason offered me that chance and it was the best decision for me.”
Hammac has been extended many offers from numerous schools but explained it is too early to make a decision. He also wants to pursue more offers before committing to a certain college.
“I have a dream of going into coaching myself,” he said. “I am also considering going into engineering, but I love the game of football.”
Mason confirmed Hammac’s love for the game by stating, “Jacob is probably the most mental player I have ever coached.”
Mason explained that Hammac can read a defense before a play happens and can audible and adapt without even glancing to the sideline.
“He knows what to do and when to do it,” said Mason. “He develops his own plays at times and studies the game in and out. Having him on the field is like having another coach added to the staff.”
Hammac said he is always up for a challenge.
“I like to be challenged,” he said. “I love the game and I always love to have a new challenge in front of me.”
He also stressed that the Blue Devils have the best offense in the area and are setting out to prove that August 23 when they take on T.R. Miller High School in preseason action.