• John Macon Gillespie

Introducing Oxford QB JR McClure

In the fall of 2013 Oxford started a sophomore at quarterback. Three seasons, 12,021 yards, 130 touchdown passes and 39 wins later Jack Abraham’s time as a Charger is over. He has now moved on to Louisiana Tech to continue his already outstanding career. Before him there were guys like Parker Adamson and Guy Billups that were setting the tone for high level of play at the quarterback position in Oxford. With a new era set to begin for Oxford, it appears they will again be turning to a sophomore QB to lead the charge.

John Reece McClure will enter his sophomore season in 2016 after a hard fought position battle this spring with transfer Zac Montgomery. Montgomery is leaving Oxford this summer.

McClure knows that there is something special about being the quarterback at Oxford High School and tips his hat to those that came before.

“They set the expectations high, by working hard and being great competitors,” McClure told SES Mississippi. “I plan on stepping in and doing the same thing.”

This spring, McClure got more reps than ever before and made the most of his opportunities. He says he feels he and the Chargers improved in all aspects of the game.

“I felt like I came in this spring and competed,” McClure said. “It's never easy leaning a new system. We worked hard and got better offensively, defensively, and on special teams.”

McClure threw a total of seven passes in 2015 for the Chargers. He completed all of them, but it isn’t what he did in his very limited snaps that has made him ready for 2016. It is what he was able to soak up on the practice field, on the sideline and in the huddle with Abraham that helped push him along.

“Jack and I grew closer over the course of the year,” McClure said. “He was a great mentor for me. I learned how to be a leader, and how to push myself to new levels. I've gotten a lot of reps from last season to this spring, but one of the main things was being able to sit behind Jack Abraham and watch him as consistent as he was.”

Oxford has a new head coach for the first time in quite some time after Johnny Hill retired after the 2015 season. Chris Cutcliffe was an assistant for the Chargers before getting the bump. Although he is the “new” head coach, he isn’t new to the Chargers and especially not McClure.

“He was my ninth grade head coach,” McClure said. “We have spent a lot of time talking about the game. I look forward to working with him over the rest of my high school career.”

As for the 2016 season, the sophomore has one thing in mind.

“To get back to the 5A state championship, and win it for all the previous players that have worked so hard for the same thing.”

Look for McClure to make his mark early for the Chargers this season.

**Photo courtesy of Oxford High Sports Productions.

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