There might come a day when Vacaville plays Folsom in a Sac-Joaquin Section Division II football playoff game and not have to worry about a quarterback carving it to bits.
But it won't be today.
For a third consecutive postseason, Vacaville is bracing to play another top-notch quarterback in a 7 p.m. section quarterfinal at Folsom, this time it is sophomore Jake Browning, who has a state-best 50 touchdown passes. He has passed for 4,147 yards, mostly to Phillip Carter, Troy Knox and Lucas Owan.
Vacaville certainly remembers Browning's predecessors.
In 2010, under a sheet of rain, Folsom's Dano Graves passed for 327 yards and five touchdowns and ran for 51 yards and three more scores all in the first half in a 75-6 rout. Folsom went on to win the CIF State D-II championship and Graves the MaxPreps National Player of the Year honor. He's now at the Air Force Academy.
In last season's D-II championship game, record-setting quarterback Tanner Trosin passed for 407 yards and four touchdowns, including a 99-yarder, and ran for 101 and one touchdown. But Vacaville outlasted Trosin and Folsom 39-35 for its second section title, capping a 13-1 season. Now at Cal Poly, Trosin set state prep records and became the first quarterback to amass 6,000 total yards in a season.
Now it's Browning's turn.
"They have another great one," Vacaville coach Mike Papadopoulos said.
Troy Taylor agrees. The Folsom co-coach and offensive coordinator has worked closely with the 6-foot-2 quarterback since Browning was in the fifth grade.
"Jake's incredible," said Taylor, a former NFL quarterback. "He's unfazed, very composed, has great anticipation. He avoids sacks, fits the ball in tight windows and has an extremely quick release. There's not a better player at any position in the section, and for us, if our quarterback doesn't play well, it's tough. Everything goes through him. He holds the team in the palm of his hands."
Taylor said a physical, bright offensive line, tutored by co-coach Kris Richardson, has allowed Browning time to pick apart defenses.
"I'm very impressed with Jake," Folsom senior lineman Josh Wormley said. "He's very poised, very good."
Taylor said Browning has instincts and the "it" factor, too.
"We tell Jake not to get too high or too low, and to shake it off if he has a bad play because (he'll) throw it another 45 times," Taylor said, adding that Browning's dedication to the game makes him special. "Jake spends every lunch hour in my office, going over film. Every waking moment, he's preparing. Everyone else is out at lunch, with the girls, and he's relentless in his pursuit of perfection."