ARVADA — For more than a decade, Fairview has been Quarterback High.
Churning out signal callers that weren't afraid to sling the ball over the field, from Anders Hill (now at Columbia) to Johnny Feauto.
The latest, Aidan Atkinson, has the potential to be the greatest.
Just watch his poise in the pocket, especially when things are breaking down in front of him, and you'll understand.
On Friday night, in his final game of his sophomore season, the 15 year old went 28 of 47 for 382 yards with a touchdown and an interception. The numbers don't matter.
The experience does.
"I'm just so proud of him and I just love his poise," said Fairview coach Tom McCartney shortly after his team 48-31 loss to Pomona in the 5A quarters at the North Area Athletic Complex.
"He doesn't get too high and he doesn't get too low. And he always just brings a presence to the huddle, to practice and to this team."
Before the game, Mother Nature came through and dropped a generous helping of moisture on the field that could have made things potentially difficult for Atkinson and the offense have to deal with the wet ball.
It didn't faze him. All you had to do was see the first pass of the game, he spun a dart up the seam to Tevye SchuttPelz-Rohl and all doubt was erased.
Even as he wandered the sidelines when the Knights defense was on the field, Atkinson always had a ball in his hand ... almost becoming one with his pigskin.
And as the game grew more and more out of hand in the second half, and a two score lead became three; that aforementioned poise was ever present.
He lead his team on a 99-yard drive without blinking.
Atkinson and his young offense around him will learn from the valuable playoff experience and be better for it.
"There's a hunger. This team got to 9-1, we got a playoff game and to be honest, we all still wanted more," McCartney said. "The guys that are coming back now have that hunger and thirst to get it done."
The rest of the state should be leary of the Knights in the coming years, especially as Atkinson continues to mature.
"We have total trust in him and believe in him and we've turned it loose," said McCartney, who has handed over the diverse playbook to his young protege.
For the season, Atkinson eclipsed the 3,000 yard passing mark last week and his TD to INT ratio for the season was a remarkable 23 to 5.
The sky is the limit.