Massive high school performances are some of the most exciting box scores to see in all of sports. Where else do you see 101-point games or 708 total yards in a loss? Short bursts of crazy numbers are nothing new, but you seldom see an all-time state record fall, especially when two fall in a three-week span.
At St. Pius X Catholic High School in Houston, football is king. The Panthers are a regular in the state playoffs among the Texas Association of Private and Parochial Schools (TAPPS), including a one-point loss in last season’s title game. St. Pius X has a senior quarterback that will be playing Division I football next season, and he’s leaving as Texas’ greatest statistical quarterback of all time.
Grant Gunnell, a 6-foot-6 senior who is committed to the University of Arizona for 2019, set the Texas high school state record for touchdown passes during his team’s 55-14 win over Antonian Prep last Friday night. In the game, the four-star recruit casually went 25-for-31 for 411 yards and six touchdowns — all of which came in the first half.
Gunnell brought his career touchdown passes total to 185, breaking Refugio quarterback Travis Quintanilla’s career record of 184 with one more regular season game to play, as well as the Texas state playoffs ahead.
The most-prolific quarterback in Texas high school football history threw 65 touchdowns during the 2016 season and another 61 last year, which includes a 10-touchdown game against Chavez in 2017.
So far this season, Gunnell has thrown for 3,632 yards and 43 touchdowns to go along with only five interceptions.
Just two weeks ago against Concordia Lutheran, Gunnell broke the Texas record for career passing yards, making his way past Booker quarterback Hunter Lile. Gunnell’s career passing total stands at 14,988 yards after last weekend’s game, and he’ll become the first quarterback in Texas high school football history to pass for 15,000 yards during the St. Pius X Panthers’ next game.
Oh, if that wasn’t enough, he also happens to hold the Texas single-season record for completions (361).
If Texas high school football is king, then St. Pius X quarterback Grant Gunnell is the state’s prodigal son.
It’s going to be a treat to watch this kid light it up in the Pac-12 next season at Arizona, but something tells me Texas’ all-time leader in passing is locked in on bringing a state championship home to Houston.