Stockton McGuire had two decisions to make as National Signing Day nears.
First he had to decide which sport he was going to play on the collegiate, which in terms dictated where he was looking to commit.
Over the weekend, the Douglas County native and Landmark Christian senior decided to play football at Davidson College in North Carolina.
The Wildcats play on the NCAA Div. I Football Championship Subdivision level, the second-highest level of college football. However, it plays in the Pioneer League, which is composed of non-scholarship programs.
McGuire, who has a 4.15 grade-point average, will attend on an academic scholarship with the opportunity to play football. He will sign with the school on National Signing Day, which is Feb. 3.
“It is a great opportunity for me from an athletic and academic standpoint,” said McGuire, who is a three-sport standout at Landmark Christian, which is located in nearby Fairburn.
McGuire made the decision to turn down track and field scholarships to Div. I schools Air Force and Samford to pursue football. He also plays on the school’s basketball team.
McGuire is the second Landmark player and Douglas County resident to commit to a college. War Eagles’ all-state offensive tackle Steven Bedosky committed to FCS member Coastal Carolina over offers from Chattanooga, Gardner-Webb, Elon and Navy this summer.
“The No. 1 thing is that the academics at Davidson is amazing,” McGuire said. “Academics played a huge part in my decision. My interest in Davidson grew even higher once I met with the coaches. They have brought in some new offensive coaches that I feel will help me grow as a player. It is a small school and that was sort of what I was looking for in a college. I really connected with the players on the team during my visit.”
McGuire’s brother, Reed, throws the hammer and discus for the Air Force Academy. Stockton is the youngest of four children of Perry and Lauren McGuire, who all earned athletic scholarships to college.
In addition to Reed, his oldest sister, Lauren, swam at the Air Force Academy before graduating in 2013. Other sister, Christian, competed in track and field at Samford.
His mother Lauren, the operator of the Chick-Fil-A in Arbor Place Mall, played basketball at Furman.
Landmark football coach Wayne Brantley calls Davidson “a good fit” since the team runs a the Spread offense, which McGuire had success at operating during his four-year playing career.
This past season, McGuire was named Athlete of the Year in Region 5-A after leading the War Eagles to a second-place finish in the region standings. He ended the season with 1,350 yards on 99 of 160 passing with 14 touchdowns and only three interceptions as the War Eagles advanced to the first round of the Class A playoffs.
The 6-foot-4 McGuire also rushed for 564 yards on 94 carries with 13 touchdowns. During his four-year career, he passed for 5,166 yards and 42 touchdowns and rushed for 2,009 yards and another 38 scores. One of the biggest awards that McGuire received was being named the state’s Wendy’s High School Heisman winner. He was one of 100 athletes across the country to win such a recognition.
Wendy's High School Heisman recognizes outstanding students across the country for their athletic prowess, academic achievement and leadership within their community.
“His skills will fit well into that offense,” Brantley said. “This is a great opportunity for him and he really proved himself as a starter the last four year for us.”
This past season, Davidson finished with a 2-9 record and used three players at the quarterback position. Junior Taylor Mitchell, a product of Buford, was the primary starter with nine starts threw for 1,509 yards and 11 touchdowns with 11 interceptions. Senior John Cook had two starts and threw for 218 yards and two scores with four interceptions. He also rushed for 163 yards.
McGuire said he should have a shot at getting some early playing time this coming fall.
“I’m extremely happy with my decision,” McGuire said. “It really is a big relief to get his process over with. I really have a good peace of mind now.”