Manley rubs elbows with the best


POSTED: Saturday, July 04, 2009

WAILEA, MAUI » What's a kid from Wahiawa doing in a place like this? Not as in hanging out at the luxurious Grand Wailea Resort on Maui's south shore, but as in hanging with some of the most highly touted prep quarterbacks in the country.

That's the question we asked Andrew Manley yesterday morning, and his response said it all: “;I just want to prove to myself and others that I can hang with these guys. So far, I feel as if I'm right there with all of them.”;

According to Steve Clarkson, organizer of the Super Seven Quarterback Retreat, the senior-to-be at Leilehua High School is doing just that.

“;Andrew has a lot of promise,”; said Clarkson, a former San Jose State standout who in the 20-plus years since has earned a reputation as the nation's premier QB guru.

“;Physically, he has all the tools,”; Clarkson added. “;Playing out here in the middle of the Pacific, many schools may not be aware of him, but he's a very talented young man who stacks up very well with some of other top quarterbacks in the country.”;

In addition to Clarkson, who won two of three head-to-head showdowns with Stanford's John Elway back in the day, the clinic staff includes the likes of Hall of Famers Joe Montana and Warren Moon, as well as Heisman Trophy winner Matt Leinart.

Manley appeared to fit right in with the likes of Nick Montana, Blake Bell and Phillip Sims, among others, during a session held on a well-manicured lawn that normally serves as the Grand Wailea's luau grounds.

The 6-foot-2, 210-pound Nick Montana, son of the legendary Joe, has committed to join the University of Washington in 2010 after completing his studies at Oaks Christian High School in Westlake Village, Calif.

Bell is a 6-6 210-pounder who threw for 3,231 yards and 37 touchdowns and rushed for 336 yards and 12 more scores as a junior last season at Bishop Carroll Catholic in Wichita, Kan. He's committed to Oklahoma.

The 6-1, 210-pound Sims possesses a linebacker's physique with a cannon of an arm. He passed for 3,195 yards and 38 touchdowns while suffering just four picks for Oscar F. Smith High School of Chesapeake, Va. Sims has committed to Alabama.

Barry Brunetti of Memphis, Tenn., is headed to West Virginia and Austin Hinder of Colorado Springs, Colo., to California.

And then, there's Manley of Leilehua, who is listed as undecided by the recruiting services.

The 6-3 210-pounder led the Mules to the state title as a sophomore in 2007 and to the Division I championship game again last year, completing 317 of 507 attempts for 3,676 yards. He threw for 31 touchdowns and rushed for four scores. He also threw 17 interceptions.

In comparison to some of the other high-profile prep standouts attending the camp, Manley is relatively unknown.

“;I've received an offer from UH,”; Manley said, “;but I'm hoping that other schools will become interested.”;

According to SI.com, Manley also has received varying levels of interest from the likes of Colorado and Oregon.

Andrew is the youngest of Kimo and Cathy Manley's three children. His parents were seated on lounge chairs overlooking the training area.

“;I always knew that Andrew had a strong arm from the time he was playing Pop Warner,”; Kimo recalled. “;And I really knew he had potential when he came close to winning a starting position as a freshman before he broke his (non-throwing left) arm.”;

Manley took over as starting QB late in his sophomore season and has emerged as one of the state's best-ever prep prospects at the position.

“;His goals are pretty simple,”; said Cathy Manley. “;To get a good college education and to play some ball.”;

It's hard for quarterbacks from Hawaii to get noticed by mainland colleges. When you think football talent from the Aloha State, you generally focus on linemen.

“;That's why getting invited to this camp is so important,”; Cathy Manley said. “;And it's great that we now have more camps in Hawaii, like the Just Win, Game Plan and All-Poly. It gives our kids an opportunity to be seen.”;

And from all indications, Andrew Manley is making the most of this opportunity.