As a Freshman, Kane Archer Set to Accomplish Something that Eluded Even Tyler Wilson

Kane Archer
photo credit: Twitter/@KaneArcher9

Few, if any, rising freshman quarterbacks in the history of Arkansas prep football have made a bigger splash on a national level than Kane Archer. The Greenwood native has laid claim to being the No. 1 player in the state of Arkansas on Prep RedZone Arkansas’ 2026 prospect list and Quarterback Hit List has Archer rated as the nation’s No. 2 overall passer in that same class.

In a fantastic 2021 season, Archer threw for 2,003 yards, 30 touchdowns and no interceptions at Greenwood Junior High School. He also displayed a willingness to run the football, rushing for 418 yards and seven touchdowns. Now with nine FBS offers, including from the likes of Arkansas, Michigan, Ole Miss and Texas A&M, Archer is preparing to show the entire country what he is capable of doing as he heads into the 2022 season.

His hard work over the offseason has paid off, as Archer will enter Greenwood High’s fall camp second on the varsity depth chart behind senior Hunter Houston, despite being just a freshman.

In January, Archer participated in the Under Armour All American Future’s game, which featured around 75 of the best eighth-grade football players in the country. Archer’s performance was impressive. He displayed a quick release and did well moving the offense down the field. Archer displayed over the weekend that he can make all throws needed to run an offense.

Archer passed for three touchdowns and had two interceptions. However, the three touchdowns were impressive, especially in game where he did not have time to get comfortable with the wide receivers. He hit the throws that required plenty of touch, as well as the passes that needed a little more force. The all-star game simply reinforced what scouts and observers already knew – Archer has the talent to play on Saturdays in the future.

Here’s a deeper look into this game:

Kane Archer Scouting Report

Accuracy: Kane Archer is one of the most impressive quarterbacks that I have seen in 17 years of covering college football recruiting. The first trait that shows up on film with Archer is just how accurate of a passer that he is. The 13-year-old quarterback has tremendous confidence in his arm. Archer does an excellent job of fitting throws into some tight windows. The ability to make a difficult throw look easy is something that Archer does to an impressive degree. 

Arm Strength: Arm strength is not an issue at all for Archer.  Earlier in the 2021 football season, Archer connected on a 60-yard touchdown pass against Shiloh Christian. Kane has the arm strength to throw it deep down the field and to do so accurately. He has the arm strength to burn a pass into a wide receiver or take something off of it and throw with some touch. Whether it be passes in the red zone or the deep ball, Archer has no problem connecting with his wide receivers. Being able to throw on the move and connect with the wide receiver is something that is not easy to do and is an impressive trait the Greenwood native possesses. 

Mobility: College football coaches and scouts want a quarterback that is not a statue in the pocket. Archer does an impressive job of knowing when to use his legs to pick up yards on the ground. Archer racked up 418 yards on the ground this season and punched the ball in the end zone seven times. He shows intelligence in taking off with the football and always seems to know where the first down chains are located. Archer will keep his eyes down the field before making the decision to run. However, should a first down be needed and is obtainable on the ground, Archer can use his legs to pick up the first down. 

Decision Making: Archer is a quarterback who does a good job of going through his progressions. If the deep throw is there, Archer will take it and get the explosive play. However, should the defense take the big play away. Archer knows where he wants to go with the football, and he will not force into coverage that is not favorable. The bottom line is his decision making is solid and will win teams plenty of games in the future. 

Pocket Presence: Having command of the pocket and displaying the confidence in the pocket is an underrated trait. Archer has learned to read where the blitz is coming from and make the quick throw. The work he has done at camps and going to California to work with quarterback guru John Beck has helped develop a tremendous pocket presence. The clock in his head lets him know when it is time to move around in the pocket or escape the pocket. Archer does a great job of stepping up in the pocket and creating a throwing lane in the process. 

Intangibles: Leadership, inspiring his teammates and just how Archer plays the game is perhaps the most important trait when finding a quarterback. Archer shows a tremendous amount of grit when playing the game. He fights for extra yardage when the time comes for him to scramble, and he is always playing until the final whistle. Adding this additional information, Archer is a football player that simply hates to lose. You have to love his competitive drive and fire that he plays with. 

Future with Greenwood Bulldogs

Archer finding a spot on the varsity team as a freshman is no small feat. It is rare for a freshman quarterback to see varsity action, as former Bulldog-turned-Razorback great Tyler Wilson did not see varsity snaps until he was a sophomore in high school. With a strong spring football season and continuing to learn the Greenwood system, Archer earned the opportunity to open some eyes going into fall practice.

Greenwood head coach Chris Young loves the group he has at the quarterback position, telling me in January that “I expect big things from the quarterback position and it is a position we are in excellent shape with over the next few years.” Young explained that the offensive side of the ball is something that he is excited about going into the spring. Spring practices and 7-on-7 play provided another opportunity for Archer to shine. 

Expectations are that Archer will go to California to put in some more work there. Quarterback guru John Beck will be working with Kane again this session. Anytime that you have a quarterback coach that has worked with numerous first round draft picks and several potential hall of fame quarterbacks it is wise to take that opportunity. Beck will continue to work on Archer’s technique and hammer out any rough edges that he may see. 

From a recruiting perspective, seven Power Five programs have already extended a scholarship offer to Archer, with Michigan, Missouri, Arkansas, Arizona, Ole Miss, Texas A&M and Louisville jumping in early. Fans of the recruiting process should not be surprised to see Oklahoma and USC jump into the mix over the next few weeks.

With Lincoln Riley at USC and him having put together dynamic offenses at Oklahoma, it would not be shocking to see the Trojans extend a scholarship offer in the future. Sources close to the USC program have explained that they are watching Archer closely and will be evaluating him over the next few seasons.

The future is wide open for Archer now. Work ethic and talent will not be matched by anyone. Fans can expect to see more headlines over the next few months concerning Archer. The young man is humble, driven and hungry to show what he can do on a big stage.

He will likely get snaps as a freshman at the varsity level and even has a chance to earn the starting job. The early results are in and they are impressive, but the best is yet to come at an in-state program that has already produced future Arkansas quarterbacks Tyler Wilson and Connor Noland.

Arkansas Recruiting for Quarterbacks in 2024, 2025 Classes

It’s fun to look ahead and think about the potential of Kane Archer considering all of the attention he’s already receiving, but it will still be several years before he steps foot on a football field in college.

In the more immediate future, the Razorbacks are currently led by a dark horse Heisman candidate in KJ Jefferson. He is a redshirt junior this season and could play himself into the NFL Draft, or he could return next season — and potentially even 2024 if he uses his bonus year.

Waiting in the wings will be Malachi Singleton, who was recently named one of the “Elite 11” quarterbacks at the prestigious annual competition. He’s a four-star prospect and the No. 203 overall recruit in the 2023 class, according to 247Sports.

Beyond that, there’s not much clarity at the position other than the fact that head coach Sam Pittman and offensive coordinator Kendal Briles are after some of the top quarterbacks in the country.

The Razorbacks have extended 11 known scholarship offers to quarterbacks in the 2024 class, which means they are rising juniors, and eight to quarterbacks in the 2025 class, or rising sophomores.

Of the 11 in the 2024 class, seven have already been on campus, including five who made their way to Fayetteville last month. The headliner of the group is in-state prospect Walker White, an Arkansas legacy from Little Rock Christian. He’s a four-star prospect and top-200 recruit by most outlets.

However, the Razorbacks have also hosted potential five-star quarterback DJ Lagway from Willis, Texas, multiple times. They are believed to be the first school to offer him in both football and baseball, but several other schools have joined them and he’s probably a long-shot at this point.

Other heralded 2024 quarterbacks Arkansas has welcomed to campus include Adrian Posse from Miami, Demond Williams from Arizona, Mabrey Mettauer from Texas, Jake Merklinger from Georgia and Josh Flowers from Alabama.

In the 2025 class, one of the quarterback offers is Garyt Odom, the son of defensive coordinator Barry Odom who plays at Shiloh Christian in Springdale. Two others — EJ Colson from Georgia and Kelden Ryan from Texas — have also been on campus.

Colson hails from Cedar Grove High School, the same school that running backs coach Jimmy Smith coached at and that produced current Razorbacks Jadon Haselwood and Rashod Dubinion. Arkansas is his only Power Five offer so far, which is a stark contrast to Ryan. The Keller, Texas, product already has seven offers from Power Five programs.

Check out Kane Archer in action:

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Check out 2024 QB Walker White in action:


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