Cord Sandberg is a 16-year-old multitasking machine.
As a freshman, he practiced with the Bradenton Manatee High varsity squad, led his junior varsity team to an undefeated season and recorded playing time in the first round of the state playoffs. As a sophomore, he led Manatee to a 13-1 season that ended in a state semifinals loss to perennial power Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas. That season, he threw for 2,855 yards and 25 touchdowns while rushing for 579 yards and 10 touchdowns.
Sandberg also said he hit .399 on the baseball team in the spring, racking up five home runs and 25 RBIs in the lead-off role as Manatee advanced to the state semifinals. He has been projected to be an early round pick in the MLB draft by his senior year.
It’s fair to say the 6-foot-2, 190-pound dual-threat quarterback and two-sport prospect has a few avenues to pursue.
Now a junior, Sandberg and the Hurricanes are 3-2, with close losses against No. 10 Olney (Md.) Our Lady of Good Counsel and No. 1 Ramsey (N.J.) Don Bosco Prep. He has collected offers from Auburn, Clemson, Cincinnati and Iowa State, while also talking to coaches and drawing interest from Alabama, FSU, Stanford, Texas, Tennessee and Florida.
“Right now, my options are open as far as football or baseball,” Sandberg said. “During football season, I’m going 100 percent and loving it. But when it ends, it’s baseball season and I give (that) everything I’ve got.
“Whatever happens next year — senior year — is probably what I’ll end up doing. I’m not sure yet right now, though.”
After his freshman season, Sandberg had already been around the recruiting circuit with trips to Auburn, Clemson and Florida. Last summer, he visited FSU, Alabama and Tennessee. After his junior year, he plans to add LSU, Texas and Stanford to the itinerary.
This summer, Sandberg was invited to Gainesville for a one-day offensive and defensive line camp to put his arm on display, an experience he enjoyed.
“I talked to (Florida offensive coordinator Charlie) Weis, and he seemed like a pretty bright guy as far as offense and developing quarterbacks,” Sandberg said. “If they were interested in me at Florida, that would definitely be an option I would have to consider for sure.”
Sandberg also has some family ties to Florida. His father, Chuck, an assistant coach for Manatee, was a first baseman for UF’s baseball team in 1979.
“I am open to wherever as of right now,” Sandberg said. “But Auburn and Clemson have definitely shown the most interest. Personally, I want to go to a place where the coaches and atmosphere feel right. So whatever happens, happens.”