Lindsey Scott Jr. has enjoyed a nomadic existence as a college quarterback, but what’s most important is not how many places he has been to, but finally getting to the right one.
And now that he is at the University of Incarnate Word, the 5-foot-11, 215-pound graduate student is accomplishing some extraordinary things. In leading UIW to a 6-1 record, he is also the FCS leader in passing efficiency (210.53).
He has thrown for 2,563 yards, 32 touchdowns, and just two interceptions.
Scott is a major dual threat, but before this season he was known much more for his running than passing. He wanted to show he could sling it as well, and since transferring from Nicholls he has put himself in the race for the Walter Payton Award.
To many FCS aficionados, Scott’s travel itinerary is well-known, but here’s the cliff notes version for those not as well-versed.
After being the Gatorade High School Player of the Year in Louisiana in 2015, he attended LSU, where after redshirting in 2016, he departed to play one season at East Mississippi Community College. He then transferred to Missouri but didn’t play in the 2018 season. Then came another move to Nicholls, where he didn’t play in 2019 due to the NCAA transfer rules, but finally did return to action in the spring of 2021 and then last fall.
As a two-year starter for Nicholls, he threw 34 touchdowns but 18 interceptions. Last season he threw 16 touchdowns and 11 interceptions while making most of his headway on the ground, with 990 yards rushing (6.9 avg.) and nine touchdowns. Then came the move to UIW.
For those keeping score, that is five colleges, which even in this day of the free moving transfer portal is a lot.
Scott had to notice the success that Cameron Ward had last season at UIW. Ward completed 384-of-590 (65.1%) passes for 4,648 yards with 47 touchdowns and just 10 interceptions as a freshman. He then transferred to Washington State where he is the starter.
In watching Scott play, he has a little Kyler Murray in him. (That isn’t to suggest that Scott is another Murray, who was the first overall draft selection in the 2019 NFL draft and has been selected to two Pro Bowls with the Arizona Cardinals). It’s just that they have similar styles.
Here is an example of Scott’s passing touch on this 33-yard scoring pass to Taylor Grimes against McNeese State.
Of course, he hasn’t forgotten how to run the ball either on this 5-yard scoring run in the same game against McNeese State.
This past week, he showed no sentimentality in leading the Cardinals to a 49-14 win over his most recent former team, Nicholls. He threw for 327 yards, five touchdowns, and zero interceptions.
His best game came the game before in a 56-17 win over Lamar. Scott completed 23 of 26 for 401 yards, seven touchdowns, and no interceptions.
More importantly, his team is having great success. UIW’s lone loss was 41-35 in a Southland Conference game to Southeastern Louisiana. Even in that game, Scott played well, completing 27 of 38 for 333 yards, three touchdowns, and one interception. He also rushed for 39 yards and a score on six carries.
UIW is 2-1 in the Southland. Two unbeaten teams remain in the conference, Northwestern State (3-0) and Texas A&M-Commerce (2-0), and the Cardinals still have to play both teams.
More importantly, the Cardinals have earned a high national profile. UIW is ranked No. 8 in the Stats Perform FCS Top 25 media poll.
Scott has benefited from the guidance of first-year head coach G.J. Kinne, whose most recent stop was as co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at Central Florida
Kinne is a former quarterback who threw 81 career touchdown passes as a three-year starter at Tulsa. He gave the NFL a try and was on the practice squad of the New York Giants but was released for good in May of 2016.
That wasn’t so long ago, especially when considering that Scott would begin his college career that fall.
Yes, it has taken Scott several moves to come to San Antonio and UIW, but nobody can argue that the latest stop has been the most fruitful.