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University quarterback Luke Hudson proving worthy of an unexpected role this season

MORGANTOWN — UHS junior quarterback Luke Hudson has always been one to compete, no matter the position he’s been put in.

After an undefeated regular season in 2021 with former UHS standout QB Chase Edwards under center, Hudson seemed to be set for one more year of learning before the position would become his.

However, when Edwards decided not to return to football for his senior year as a precaution against concussion syndrome, Hudson found himself leading the UHS offense a year earlier than expected.

Despite coming into the starting role at an unexpected time, Hudson says his preparation as a backup and his support from his teammates allowed him to step onto the field and make an immediate impact.

“Last year as the backup and running the scout team I did everything the backup would,” Hudson said. “It was easy to move in to the starting job because of the seniors and the belief they had in me. I think they believed in me more than I did myself. When I came in they just told me I had it and wanted to get it rolling.”

One of those leaders was the person Hudson stepped in for, Chase Edwards, who decided not to return to the field this season due to the number of concussions he has suffered. Being a senior this year, Edwards remains on the sidelines with the Hawks and helps Hudson every single drive, something Luke describes as “like having a second pair of eyes on the field”.

“First of all, Chase is a great friend of mine,” he said. “Last year when he was playing I tried to just stay involved and pay attention. When he got hurt and I stepped in he was right there to support me and give me advice. He knows the offense as well as anyone and tells me to look for things he notices.”

Another relationship Hudson gives credit to is the one he shares with UHS offensive coordinator Eric Snyder, who is Hudson’s stepfather. The two have been able to use their bond outside of football, to allow a smooth transition for both player and coach coming into 2022.

“Luke came in an understood the offense better than a typical back up quarterback,” Snyder said. “He and I had definitely been talking about the offense even before he came to UHS and before I was coaching him so when I stepped in he was able to pick up where we left off.”

“Any quarterback is like an extension of the offensive coordinator, and being able to have those conversations at home together helps for sure,” said Snyder. “It’s good to have that so that he can come out here and be that extension and explain things to his teammates on the field. His mother knows what she’s talking about also so nothing gets by.”

Hudson talked about Snyder’s influence on him playing football in the first place, as it wasn’t until late in middle school that Luke decided to put the pads on.

“At first I was honestly anti-football, but my seventh or eighth grade year I would come to practice and watch and be around it all the time,” Hudson recalled of when Snyder began coaching at UHS. “He’s always been there for me and he takes me everywhere. It’s great.”

Hudson will return to the field on Friday, a week removed from his record-breaking, 500 yard passing performance against Wheeling Park, to lead the Hawks on a short trip south to visit the top-ranked class AA Fairmont Senior Polar Bears. Kickoff is set for 7:00 p.m.

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