QB Knight returns home, eager to excel

Trevor Knight

By Mark Newman

Trevor Knight turns 25 on Oct. 3, and it will be hard to top his favorite birthday present of all time.

“My trampoline,” he said. “That provided me with countless hours of entertainment for years and years. We used to put it up to the basketball goal and play slam-ball, and me and my brother would be out there and get into a bunch of fights, so that was probably the best one.”

The new San Antonio Commanders of The Alliance of American Football are offering an opportunity that could give the old trampoline a run for its money. He would love nothing more than to bounce back into a high-impact position at the helm of an offense, and coming home to this city as a freshly signed QB is a golden opportunity.

Knight should be among the fan favorites when Commanders camp opens in November. As a senior at Ronald Reagan High School, he threw for 2,092 yards and 27 touchdowns, along with 943 rushing yards for 15 TDs. He was ranked as the sixth best dual-threat quarterback recruit by the Rivals.com recruiting network, back then, and Knight chose to play at Oklahoma, along with twin brother and slam-ball rival Connor.

As a Sooner, Knight threw for 348 yards and four TDs to win Sugar Bowl MVP honors in a 45-31 upset of Alabama, stopping the Crimson Tide in its bid for a third straight national championship. Knight took numerous big-time snaps at Oklahoma over two seasons, accumulating 3,424 yards and 25 TDs in 24 games, but losing the starting job to Baker Mayfield. Knight moved on in 2016 to Texas A&M as a graduate transfer.

Knight transferred there with no guarantees, and it paid off big. Those aforementioned thoughts about his favorite birthday present came in a get-to-know-him video interview for Gigem247 that December, and it was during his rise in popularity all over the campus. In 2016, Knight started 11 games for Texas A&M, leading the Aggies to a 7-1 start and eventually an 8-5 record. He completed 53.3 percent of his passes for 2,432 yards, 19 TDS and seven interceptions. He added 614 yards and 10 TDs on the ground in his one year, leading the team in rushing as a QB.

“I’m excited about the future,” Knight said at Aggies Pro Day in the spring of 2017. “You pour so much into this, day in and day out, and when it’s over, you don’t really know what’s next. My future’s not certain. Just that stability of every Saturday being able to compete, it’s tough to walk away from.”

Knight showed great athleticism at the subsequent NFL Combine, outperforming all other QBs in the 40 at 4.54 seconds. He was able to show off arm strength with deep throws. He was seen as a likely mid-round draft pick or at least a free agent signee, and the latter proved true, as the Arizona Cardinals signed him to a three-year contract at $555,000 per year, but releasing him before that season began. He then made the Atlanta Falcons practice squad before being released, and most recently tried out with the Chicago Bears.

Knight has yet to take a regular-season snap as a pro QB, so this would be a big opportunity – a new one. He is one of several former SEC QBs signed so far, including former Purdue and Florida QB Austin Appleby (San Antonio), Alabama’s Blake Sims (Birmingham) and LSU’s Zach Mettenberger (Memphis). Knight was adamant about sticking with QB hopes when some scouts suggested he move to receiver or another position, and it stands to reason that remains his interest heading into Commanders camp.

“I’m kind of riding the wave of this thing and figuring it out as it goes along,” Knight told reporters in 2017. “For me it’s a dream come true. A dream of mine since I was a little kid.  just want a shot. I’ll go compete with anybody. If it works out, and that’s guys playing for my life, then it’s gonna be awesome, I’ll give it everything I have. If not, there’s more to my life than just football. I’m enjoying the process and it’s been an incredible journey so far.”