The 50 most important college players in Texas in 2017 — No. 29: Texas State’s Damian Williams
AS THE COLLEGE FOOTBALL SEASON EDGES CLOSER, WE TAKE A LOOK AT THE MOST PIVOTAL PLAYERS FOR EACH PROGRAM'S RESPECTIVE SUCCESS.
The importance of a player is not always defined by their skill level. The most important player on a team or in a unit is not always the best player on a team. This list is designed to breakdown the 50 most important players in Texas college football for the 2017 season. It is not a ranking of the 50 best college football players in the state. Importance can be defined by position, need, skill or leadership. We’ll count down the list through the summer, all the way to No. 1.
50 – Lamar DE Daniel Crosley / 49 – TCU WR KaVontae Turpin / 48 – UTEP QB Ryan Metz
47 – UMHB RB Markeith Miller / 46 – Sam Houston State DE PJ Hall / 45 – Baylor WR Blake Lynch
44 – Texas Tech WR Jonathan Giles (transferred) / 43 – Texas Tech RB Justin Stockton
42 – PVAMU WR Joshua Simmons / 41 – Rice RB Samuel Stewart / 40 – UNT WR Jalen Guyton
39 – Texas RB Chris Warren / 38 – Rice OL Trey Martin / 37 – Texas A&M Commerce QB Luis Perez
36 – Baylor DL K.J. Smith / 35 – Texas State LB Gabe Loyd / 34 – Texas State WR Thurman Morbley
33 – Houston DB Khalil Williams / 32 – Texas Tech LB Jordyn Brooks / 31 – SFA DL John Franklin
30 – SMU DE Justin Lawler
Damian Williams may be new to the Texas State roster, but he has more collegiate experience than any other Bobcat quarterback heading into the fall. Williams played four years at Mississippi State before electing to transfer to Texas State as a graduate student, where he will have one season of eligibility. While he was mostly a backup for the Bulldogs, Williams saw action in 17 games in his career while earning two spot starts. He finished with 706 yards and five touchdowns through the air in addition to two rushing touchdowns in his time in Starkville.
Williams was a state championship winning quarterback in high school, choosing to attend Mississippi State after leading Archbishop Rummel (Louisiana) to its first ever state title his senior season.
Williams will be a dynamic weapon under center in San Marcos, but his accuracy can be questionable at times. He completed around 60 percent of his passes in high school and had a 58 percent completion percentage with the Bulldogs. He does like to throw the ball down the field though, which will give the Bobcats the big-play threat they were missing last season when the team averaged just 6.36 yards per attempt. Williams is also a dual-threat option who can escape the pocket and make plays with his feet. His size (6-1, 229), elusiveness, speed and physicality should combine to punish opposing defenses in the Sun Belt Conference
Texas State didn’t have a lot of options to go with heading into spring football before Williams announced his transfer – especially when Eddie Printz, Connor White and Tanner Hodges all transferred out of the program after the season. Coach Everett Withers and the Bobcats need a reliable option under center to make the progress they’re looking for in year two. Withers said after the team’s spring game that Williams still has a long way to go, but for now it does appear that he is the best option to lead the offense. As a senior, he can provide leadership to what will be a young roster as Texas State looks to improve on its average of less than 19 points per game last year.
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Brady Keane is a Contributing Writer for Dave Campbell’s Texas Football. Follow him on Twitter: @BradyKeane.