Arch Manning can play more than just football.
He also plays on the hardwood.
The five-star junior quarterback, ranked No. 1 in his class, played for Isidore Newman (La.) Saturday night against nationally ranked Oak Hill.
“I think it’s good coming down here,” Manning said after Saturday night’s game. “There’s a lot of competition. It’ll definitely up our game when we get back to Louisiana. It’s good for us, and it’s a good experience.
“I like still being able to compete. It’s a good group of guys on our basketball team, a great coach, so it’s fun being out here.”
Manning is the son of Cooper Manning, who was in line to play in the NFL alongside his two brothers, Peyton and Eli. After enrolling at Ole Miss, Cooper was diagnosed with spinal stenosis at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, and ended his playing career after that.
Arch concluded his junior season with over 2,000 yards passing and 26 touchdowns to just four interceptions. He also rushed for eight touchdowns with the Greenies. They advanced to the state semifinals in LHSAA Division III.
Manning said he enjoys playing basketball and has stayed playing the game despite being a highly coveted recruit, with national title contenders in Alabama, Clemson, and Georgia extending offers to the 6-foot-4 quarterback.
“I played every sport when I was younger,” Manning said. “Kind of just was thrown out there into everything. I like basketball a lot, and I just kind of stuck with it.”
Manning comes off the bench in coach Randy Livingston’s system, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t make an impact. Manning averaged 2.7 points, 3.8 rebounds, and 1.5 assists per game last year when the Greenies were state runners-up in the LHSAA Division III Championship.
Manning failed to score in 23 minutes of action in his team’s first two games, loses Saturday night to Oak Hill 82-48 and to Gill St. Bernard’s on Sunday 64-49.
“He’s smart, he’s an athletic player, and he’s been playing for me since the eighth grade,” Livingston said. “He knows what to expect, and what we like to do on offense and defense. We like having him around. He’s a great teammate, great passer, does a lot of stuff for us.”
When asked about the chaos in college football when it’s come to coaching changes, including Brian Kelly to LSU, Lincoln Riley to USC, and Mario Cristobal to Miami, Manning gave a relatively short, clear-cut answer.
“It’s been crazy with all the coaching changes and transfer portals for sure,” he said.
“Peyton and Eli,” a new show during Monday Night Football on ESPN2, has been considered a hit for many, with only increasing ratings week-by-week as both Mannings have taken digs at one another, providing humorous comedy while also breaking down the game from their perspective.
Manning said he watches his uncles whenever they are on ESPN2 on Monday nights, and said he’s learning something new every time they’re breaking down a play they just watched.
“It’s cool,” Manning said. “I learn a lot from those (shows). It’s cool seeing them on TV again, and I’m glad they’re getting a lot of reviews. I’m pretty much like everyone else; they’re funny about it and passionate about the game and know everything about it. It’s fun getting to watch them.”
Follow Southwest Florida Sports Writer Alex Martin on Twitter: @NP_AlexMartin. For the best sports coverage in Southwest Florida, follow @newspresssports and @ndnprepzone on Instagram.
This article originally appeared on Fort Myers News-Press: Arch Manning, nephew to Eli and Peyton Manning and son to Cooper Manning, playing at City of Palms