HOLMES TOWNSHIP – Keaton Teynor was groomed to be a quarterback. But his high school career has been spent primarily at wide receiver — until this year.
Teynor, a senior, took over the reins of the Wynford offense with the departure of Brock Williamson to graduation. The return to his natural position has been seamless.
“I’ve played quarterback since seventh grade,” Teynor said. “I knew what I was doing. I got two starts last year when Brock went down with an injury.”
Wynford coach Gabe Helbert had no reservations about returning Teynor to the starting quarterback spot this year.
“We knew he would do a good job,” Helbert said. “He’s a competitor. We felt very good about Keaton. It’s not like he had no experience.”
Williamson missed starts against Galion and Colonel Crawford last year and Teynor filled in admirably. He also played under center the majority of a playoff game against Lucasville Valley as a sophomore.
Teynor has been the sparkplug igniting the Royals’ return to the postseason after a one-year hiatus. He ran for 971 yards and 16 touchdowns and threw for 939 more, good for 11 scores.
Both coach and player thought the time Teynor spent at receiver, where he played the past two years, has benefitted him as a signal caller.
“I know the routes and the timing,” Teynor said. “It helped playing receiver last year. I kind of figured I’d being playing quarterback my senior year.”
“His experience at wide receiver was valuable,” Helbert agreed. “He is well rounded.”
Still, it isn’t always easy being receiver in a Wing-T — run-first — offense.
“We asked him to block a lot in the position he was playing,” Helbert said. “But he was a capable receiver when we did throw it.”
Teynor has accepted the leadership role without incident. But as good quarterbacks recognize, the team is not 9-1 with him alone.
“Coach Helbert put me in a great position to throw the ball,” Teynor said. “I have receivers who can catch the ball and an offensive line to protect me. It’s not really that hard.”
Teynor responded by completing over 60 percent of his passes. His coach was not surprised.
“When given the opportunity, he threw the ball very efficiently,” Helbert said. “In the off-season, he worked on improving his technique. He had a good arm.”
Teynor has recognized the historical perspective of his position.
“It’s a little bit of pressure knowing I’m playing for Wynford,” Teynor said. “But it helps when you have guys around you that can make plays and an offensive line in front of you to block for you.”
He has acquitted himself well in leading the Royals to their ninth playoff appearance in 10 years.
“Keaton has responded well,” Helbert said. “He knows how to deal with adversity. He has accepted the challenge and has figured out how to win and be successful.”
Teynor has helped provide his team one more home game and the chance to extend the season even further in pursuit of a state title.
For that job, Teynor has demonstrated that he is well-suited.