- By Adam Lichtenstein Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
Benjamin offensive lineman Martin Weisz is used to quarterback Jordan Travis playing behind him. But sometimes the dual-threat quarterback sprints out ahead, like one play the Virginia-bound lineman remembered from last year.
“I think it was a high snap and he had to catch the ball. So he ran … to the right of the field, then ran to the left of the field, then ran back to the right of the field and then got a 40-yard rushing touchdown,” Weisz said. “Me and all the other linemen were looking at each other, like, ‘Who are we blocking?’
“I think that play truly defines what kind of truly special player Jordan is.”
Travis made a habit out of spectacular plays, blossoming into Palm Beach County’s top quarterback. He is the 2017 Palm Beach Post Small Schools Offensive Player of the Year after accounting for 40 touchdowns — 24 passing and 16 rushing — and 3,095 yards (2,190 passing and 905 rushing) as a senior and leading the Buccaneers back to the FHSAA playoffs for the first time since 2007. The senior was named Palm Beach County’s Player of the Year at the Groza Award banquet in December.
“My team and coaches, for sure, just pushing me every day at practice, making me the best quarterback and player I can be,” said Travis when asked how he played so well. “And I was just trying to be the best leader I can be for everyone else.”
Travis transferred to Benjamin from Palm Beach Central before his junior year. Eric Kresser, a former college and professional quarterback, was the offensive coordinator — he was recently promoted to head coach after Ron Ream retired — and he took Travis under his wing.
“He’s grown a lot,” Kresser said. “I’ve given him a lot of responsibilities in the offense, and he’s taken everything I’ve given him and excelled at it.”
Under Kresser’s tutelage, Travis accounted for 5,496 passing and rushing yards as well as 72 touchdowns in two seasons with the Buccaneers.
This past year, Travis helped lead Benjamin further into the playoffs than they had gone since 2005.
“It meant a lot to get Coach Ream out on a good note. He’s a great coach, and we wanted it to end great for him,” Travis said.
Travis capped his high-school career in December, following in the footsteps of another great Palm Beach County quarterback, Lamar Jackson, by signing with Louisville.
“It feels great,” Travis said. “It’s a blessing from the man upstairs. I want to thank everyone for pushing me to be the best player and man I can be, and I’m very thankful.”