LARAMIE — Aaron Young wants a chance to beat the teams that turned him down.
The ASA College (NY) quarterback, who played one year at the junior college level after playing high school football in Folsom, Calif., committed to Wyoming on Thursday evening.
Young threw for 1,803 yards with 22 touchdowns and only three interceptions in his lone season at ASA College, leading his team to nine consecutive victories. The 6-foot-3, 210-pound signal caller noticed that Wyoming had a new coaching staff and was in need of a quarterback, and had been attempting to contact both head coach Craig Bohl and offensive coordinator Brent Vigen for weeks with no response.
Finally, Young sent his highlight tape to Vigen on Facebook on Wednesday night. And by Thursday morning, ASA College offensive coordinator Chris Boden — and then Young — received a call.
“When [Jason] Thompson transferred, I really pushed. And it just kind of happened,” Young said. “It came together. Perseverance paid off.”
Vigen talked with Young over the phone on Thursday, and Bohl called roughly 30 minutes after the conversation with Vigen ended. Young estimates that within a three-hour stretch, he had received and accepted an offer.
Young, who only started at quarterback one year in high school, has never stepped foot on Wyoming’s campus, only having looked at photos on the Internet. Likewise, he has followed North Dakota State for years but has never met Bohl or Vigen.
But none of that mattered. When he received an opportunity to play quarterback in the Mountain West, Young was prepared to sign on the dotted line.
“That was enough for me,” Young said. “I had known for weeks that if Wyoming extended an offer I was going to commit on the spot.”
The chip on Young’s shoulder has been growing for more than a year, since the FBS schools in California didn’t extend him an offer and he was forced to bide his time.
As much as he wants to win for Wyoming, Young is also motivated to show Mountain West opponents what they missed.
“I didn’t really get any offers out of high school. I had to go the JC route, which was a little challenging,” Young said. “It was sometimes deflating. But playing in the Mountain West is a dream of mine, to play in front of my family almost week in and week out.
“I kind of have a chip on my shoulder when I think about playing San Jose State, San Diego State and Fresno State — all the teams that kind of turned their back on me out of high school. Now I have a chance to beat all three of those teams three years in a row.”
That’s all assuming he wins Wyoming’s starting job, which at this point is far from a given. But quarterback evaluator Benjamin Allbright said on Thursday night that Young will be a fit in Bohl and Vigen’s scheme.
“Another solid efficient guy who doesn’t turn it over,” Allbright tweeted to the Star-Tribune. “Not the biggest guy, not the biggest arm, not very mobile. Efficient though. He’s not going to put team on his back and win games, but he certainly won’t lose them.”
Young said he plans to sign his letter of intent on this morning and arrive in Laramie in a few weeks. And while it has all happened incredibly quickly, the future Cowboy is confident he’s found a long-term home.
“I’m excited for what’s going on at Wyoming so far, and I’m excited to get there and see where this thing can go,” Young said.