Johnathan Bennett

Summerville quarterback Johnathan Bennett passed for 1,727 yards and 16 touchdowns, and rushed for 769 yards and 8 TDs last season. File/Staff

Summerville rising senior quarterback Johnathan Bennett has ended his college recruiting with a verbal commitment to Liberty University.

The 6-1, 210-pound signal caller had a handful of Division I offers but several schools wanted him to play another position in college. Liberty was the one program that talked about Bennett being a quarterback throughout the recruiting process.

“Johnathan has come a long way in the last two years as a quarterback and I think his best football is ahead of him,” Summerville coach Joe Call said. “Liberty is the one school that sees that potential a well. He’s a great leader and he’s a team guy. He also has a great football I.Q. He knows the game and he’s a guy that makes plays.”

Bennett guided the Green Wave to a 10-win season in 2017, throwing for 1,506 yards and rushing for 602 yards. He accounted for a total of 23 touchdowns.

Bennett also has started on Summerville’s basketball team since his freshman year.

Way early football rankings

Area high school football teams will spend the next six weeks involved in passing leagues with preseason football practice set to begin in less than two months. So, now is as good a time as any to publish an early preseason top 10 teams in the Lowcountry this fall.

The top four teams heading into the season will be, in no order, Berkeley, Fort Dorchester, Summerville and Timberland.

Berkeley returns an elite group of skill positioned players, including quarterback Eric Tuttle, running back Keyshawn Wicks, and receivers DJ Chisolm and Dervon Pesnell.

Fort Dorchester must replace four-year starting quarterback Dakereon Joyner but has solid athletes returning with experience at several positions. Junior running back Kalil Jenkins will be a player to watch while linebacker Davon Gilmore will anchor the defense.

Summerville returns Bennett at quarterback and several key defenders, including last year’s leading tackler Cole Phillips, while Timberland has athletic experience returning across the board.

First Baptist is a solid choice as a top five team this fall. The Hurricanes move from AA to AAA in the SCISA ranks and return one of the state’s top running backs in senior Michel Dukes.

Cane Bay and Ashley Ridge will be solid teams that should remain top 10 teams all fall. Cane Bay has a transfer at quarterback as senior Elijah Bey comes over from C.E. Murray.

Ashley Ridge quarterback Matthew Duncan is one of the state’s top junior signal callers.

The final three spots are wide open but Wando’s defense, led by linebacker Justin Pelic, will give them a great chance to win. West Ashley is athletic and has an experienced quarterback in Kenyatta Jenkins. The tenth spot is wide open for teams like Stratford, Hanahan and Goose Creek, who look to improve under new head coaches this fall.

Hanahan defensive end Cooper Dawson already has several Division I offers while Stratford junior running back Mario Anderson is a rising star on the summer camp circuit.