Greenwich QB Gavin Muir hoping to build off last season’s success

Take a look at the Greenwich High School football team’s record book and you’ll see Gavin Muir’s name atop the list of seven passing categories, one of which is most career touchdown passes.

And he still has one more season to play for the Cardinals.

Production was one of the theme’s of Muir’s first season as Greenwich’s starting quarterback last fall, as he emerged as one of the state’s premier signal callers, helpeding lead the team to the championship game of the CIAC Class LL Tournament.

With the Cardinals’ 2018 campaign less than two months away, the 6-foot-2, 205-pound Muir is intent on building upon one of the best seasons a GHS quarterback has ever registered.

“Last year was an awesome experience,” said Muir, who will serve as one of the Cards’ captains in the fall. “We bonded as a team and I think I became a team leader myself. I’m going to try to carry that experience into this year.”

What the Cardinals experienced in 2017 was a memorable season that saw them post a record of 12-1, win the FCIAC championship and play Darien for the Class LL state title — a game in which the Blue Wave won, 31-22 in a steady snowfall.

“From last year, I learned that no moment is too big,” Muir said. “In that championship game, I tried to play the same way I did all season. That experience of being in the state championship will help us.”

Muir certainly didn’t play like a first-year starting varsity quarterback last season. Showcasing his strong, accurate right arm, he shattered the Cardinals’ record for passing yards in one season with 2,902 yards. Tucker Stafford had the previous record of 2,260 yards during the Cardinals’ standout 2007 season.

Already with the most career touchdown passes in Greenwich history with 40, Muir threw 33 of them a year ago, which was also a single-season record. Cardinals coach John Marinelli has seen Muir consistently improve the past several seasons and is not surprised by his development.

“There are certain types of people in this world,” Marinelli said. “There are some who show up, do what they need to do at work, then go home and put work aside. Others bring their work home with them and do what they can to be more successful. It’s so clear that Gavin brings work home with him and puts in extra time toward improving his performance.”

Serving as a backup to starting quarterback Connor Langan his sophomore season, Muir received significant action during Greenwich’s loss against Darien in the 2016 Class LL quarterfinals, after Langan left the game in the second quarter with an ankle injury.

“We were outmatched that game against a great Darien team, but Gavin stood in the pocket, made some good throws and was not afraid as a sophomore playing in a state quarterfinal-round game,” Marinelli said. “From his freshman year to his sophomore year he showed a lot of improvement. He went from being a development quarterback to competing with Connor as the starting quarterback as a sophomore. His offseason was geared around being better his junior year after that playoff game and his teammates really rallied around his work ethic and the type of person he is.”

Muir’s 203 completions in 2017 broke a team single-season record and his seven-touchdown passes and 387-yard passing game against Westhill were also record-setting performances for the program.

“His numbers last season rivaled any of the great quarterbacks in the state,” Marinelli said of Muir’s junior season. “What he did last year some quarterbacks don’t accomplish during an entire career.”

At the recent Grip It & Rip It 7-on-7 Passing Tournament at New Canaan High School, Muir showed good rapport with the variety of receivers the Cardinals possess.

“I have a really great connection with all of our receivers,” Muir said. “I have competed with them since freshman year and our chemistry has carried through all the years.”

With rising seniors Lance Large, Stephen Bennett and Garrett Murphy returning to the receiving corps and senior Tysen Comizio catching the ball out of the backfield, Muir should have plenty of options in the passing game.

“It’s good to have a quarterback like Gavin,” said Large, who had 42 receptions for 411 yards last season. “When you look in the backfield and see Gavin, you feel really confident.”

Muir, who will also captain the Greenwich’s basketball team, has peaked the interest of some colleges. He was offered a football scholarship from Bucknell University last month and recently visited Harvard and Brown.

Lafayette, Lehigh, Holy Cross, Dartmouth and Fordham are some other schools he has visited, or plans on visiting.

“He’s on a lot of different college boards,” Marinelli said of Muir. “Whoever gets him will get the total package. He is a tremendous character kid and a great student. Gavin knows what it means to be a student-athlete.”

The Cardinals’ quarterback credits the coaching staff for preparing him for his important role.

“Coach Marinelli took me under his wing and gave me some playing time my sophomore year,” Muir said. “My junior year, he got me ready for the season and he’s helping me already for my senior year.”

Marinelli is impressed with Muir’s skill set and intangibles he brings to the quarterback position.

“Gavin sees the field really well and has a knack for getting the ball out quickly,” Marinelli said. “He knows the offense so well and he understands what defenses are trying to do. He is a constant worker, who makes everyone around him better.”

 

dfierro@greenwichtime.com

 

-----

Leave a Comment