Being a sophomore starting quarterback at Phoenix Brophy Prep has worked well before, so why not this time around?
Ahwatukee Foothills native Chase Knox, who rose to local fame as a member of the “Dawgs,” helping put Ahwatukee Foothills on the map at the 2006 Little League World Series, has thrown for 1,254 yards and 12 touchdowns this season for the Broncos, who visit Thunder Stadium to face Desert Vista in a Fiesta Region tilt Friday at 7 p.m.
Most importantly, however, Knox has steered the Brophy ship to a 6-2 record, and helped the Broncos prove they could hang with the best of the best, losing only to last year’s Class 5A-I and 5A-II champions (Peoria Centennial and Chandler Hamilton).
Up with the varsity team for a good chunk of last season as a freshman, Knox cut his teeth working as the scout team quarterback against one of the top defenses in the state.
Brophy coach Scooter Molander said facing that defense every day put Knox in a position to succeed despite being an underclassman.
“Doing that everyday, that helped me get the speed of the game down. Last year to this year I’ve already felt a lot of improvement,” said Knox, who added that he and his parents chose Brophy despite living close to Desert Vista because of its religious ties, on top of being a strong academic school.
Molander won’t pencil Knox in as the be-all, end-all starter for the next three seasons, but said that as Knox develops and matures, there’s no reason he won’t end up a three-year starter, and a successful one at that. Just two years, ago, the Broncos graduated Scottsdale-native Bryan Berens, a three-year starter in his own right who helped lead the program to state championships as a sophomore and a junior – the proud program’s first and only football titles.
Molander said that kind of success is part of the reason that he’s not looking until next year with Knox and the Broncos.
“The future is now. What I mean by that, the seniors that are seniors, that’s their last opportunity, even if a sophomore has two more years,” Molander said. “So at every position guys need to understand it and do their job, Chase has been doing that.”