With the kind of season Garrett Nussmeier had in 2019, it is no wonder that college football’s defending national champs came calling.
The Marcus High School quarterback passed for 3,788 yards and 38 touchdowns last season and led the Marauders to a district championship and two playoff victories.
He also committed to Louisiana State University, where he is headed after what he hopes will be a banner senior season.
“I think LSU is a good fit for a lot of reasons,” Coach Kevin Atkinson said. “But the two most prevalent are that one, it is his dream to play for LSU – this is his school that he and his family have been cheering on for years. How many times in life do you get the opportunity to play for the team that you have always followed? And two, Garrett is a big time player who deserves to be among big time players who play games at one of the highest possible levels for their age group.”
Nussmeier, son of Dallas Cowboys Quarterbacks Coach Doug Nussmeier, is a “big time” player indeed, earning District 6-6A MVP honors in 2019 and in firm command of the Marauders offensive playbook.
“Garrett brings a lot to the table at the QB position,” Atkinson said. “First he is a great kid. Second, he is like having another assistant coach. Next to our Offensive Coordinator Coach Morrison and myself, I would say Garrett is the one with the most knowledge of what we do offensively.”
Nussmeier, 18, said he was pleased with how last season unfolded.
“I felt like we had a great 2019 season,” Nussmeier said. “We did some special things in winning the first undefeated district championship and having the third best record in school history. Personally, I felt like I played my best ball when it mattered the most. I also feel like I developed more and more as the season went on last year. It has continued to this offseason as well.”
Marcus improved from a 5-5 mark in 2018 to 11-2 with a trip to the regional quarterfinals in 2019, and Nussmeier said he and his teammates enjoyed every minute of it.
“It was an unbelievable feeling knowing that we were proving everyone wrong every week,” Nussmeier said. “We had people doubting us more and more every week, saying things like ‘they can’t win district, they can’t go undefeated.’ I felt like in 2018, our locker room was not very good, and as we reloaded with a new group of seniors who really loved football and really cared about our team, you saw the results.”
Nussmeier said one of the things that gives him great optimism for the 2021 season is camaraderie that the team has developed.
“Last year the seniors set a pretty high bar, and I’m excited to help lead my team to set a higher bar this year,” Nussmeier said. “We have a great group of guys, and we all support and love each other no matter what. It is a very special group. I am very very excited to see the things we can accomplish this season.”
A Lake Charles, Louisiana native, Nussmeier has traveled all over the country, but said that the Bayou state is still the place that draws him in most, and a big part of the reason he selected LSU.
“I think the most important thing about LSU for me was that its home,” Nussmeier said. “Growing up, Louisiana has always been my consistent home and so my love for the state is very strong. My roots are in that state, and I will always think of it as my home.”
With the coronavirus pandemic, Nussmeier said there have been a few issues, but added that he and his teammates are still prepared for when the season starts.
“COVID has not been a huge distraction for me except for when we lost spring ball,” Nussmeier said. “We have still been able to get our workouts in and stay in shape. When it is time to play, we will be ready to compete and win.”
Atkinson said his expectations for Nussmeier this season are to leave Marcus as the all-time leading passer in school history, improve each week and help lead the Marauders on a long playoff run.
“It is an extreme honor to coach a player of his caliber,” Atkinson said. “QB is such an important role, but even better when you have a servant leader taking charge of your team. Garrett is so concerned with his teammates and helping them achieve their goals that he’s not even concerned about earning his goals. He understands that achievement will happen by helping others succeed.”