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July 3, 2013

Meet the new guys: Kenny Hill

As Texas A&M's fall camp draws closer, AggieYell.com will introduce each of the players who are arriving in College Station this summer. Next up: quarterback Kenny Hill.

High school: Southlake Carroll

Height/Weight: 6'1", 215 lbs.

2012 stats: 205-of-306 passing for 3,369 yards and 27 TDs and 3 INTs; 1,421 yards rushing and 33 TDs.

Awards/Recognitions: Rivals 250 member, 4-star prospect; 2012 Texas Gatorade Player of the Year; 5A Offensive Player of the Year; 5A First Team All-State; Fort Worth Star-Telegram First Team Super Team; Dallas Morning News All-Area First Team; 4-5A District MVP; Parade All-American Honorable Mention

Why the Aggies wanted him: The list of accolades above give a pretty good indication of the caliber of player the Aggies got in Hill, but A&M wasn't simply after a talented quarterback when they recruited him. They were after a quarterback who had successfully led a high school offense with a lot of similarities to the one operated by Kevin Sumlin and (then-offensive coordinator) Kliff Kingsbury.

Hill's highlights show he's got plenty of arm strength, but also show him operating out of a spread offense that looks familiar to a lot of Aggie fans. He has a quick release, makes good decisions and is accurate with his short to intermediate passes, a vital element of the Aggie scheme. While he's not nearly as agile a runner as Johnny Manziel is, he's perfectly capable of making plays with his feet and is big enough to take on tacklers instead of trying to elude them.

When Sumlin and Kingsbury began to go after Hill, they already had another four-star quarterback -- Kohl Stewart -- under wraps. That didn't stop them from going after the quarterback they thought was a better fit for their system, and they got him when Hill committed on April 29, 2012. The move looked even better when Stewart was picked fourth overall in the Major League Baseball draft and signed with the Minnesota Twins.

Likelihood of playing in 2013 (5 being probable starter, 1 being near-certain redshirt): 2. Hill will have to beat out two more experienced players in Matt Joeckel and Matt Davis in order to win the backup job behind Manziel, and he's going to have limited opportunities to do so. But neither Joeckel or Davis set the world on fire in the spring, so it's possible that, if he shows the ability to move the offense when the other two don't in fall practice, he could move up the depth chart. But, with Manziel likely to leave after this season, A&M might want to groom him for a year before taking over the top job in 2014.


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