NFL, MLB, CFL stats

QB Daquan Neal Signs with Sugar Skulls

November 3, 2021 - Indoor Football League (IFL) - Tucson Sugar Skulls News Release

TUCSON - The Tucson Sugar Skulls have signed 2019 IFL MVP quarterback Daquan Neal. After spending the past two Indoor Football League seasons starring for the Iowa Barnstormers, Neal reunites with his former Iowa Head Coach, Dixie Wooten, in Tucson. Under Wooten's guidance in 2019, Neal became the first player in league history to earn Most Valuable Player honors in his rookie season.

Tucson won five of their last seven games in 2021, and with Neal under center, they aim to ride that momentum into 2022. Neal is expected to provide a major boost to a Sugar Skulls passing game which ranked 9th in the IFL in 2021, averaging 129.1 yards per game. For Iowa, Neal's 152.8 passing yards per game ranked second in the league.

Neal led Iowa to the postseason in each of his two seasons with Iowa, including a deep run alongside Wooten in 2019, which ended one game short of the United Bowl. That season, Neal was injured during the conference championship, and the Barnstormers ended up losing to Sioux Falls, the eventual league champion.

Former MVP Neal a Dual Threat for Sugar Skulls

New Sugar Skulls quarterback Daquan Neal is an electrifying talent both passing and running the football, and has been signed from Iowa to inject life into a Tucson offense that found the end zone 35 times in 2021, 7th best out of 11 teams in league. Neal has accounted for 128 touchdowns (88 passing, 40 rushing) in his first two seasons in the IFL, including a league-leading 83 scores (59 passing, 24 rushing) in his MVP rookie season of 2019.

From the quarterback position, Neal out gained every running back in the IFL in 2021 and finished second in the league in rushing, with 45.8 yards per game -- despite Iowa playing just 12 regular season games due to scheduling conflicts. A 6-foot-2, 215-pound physical specimen, Neal earned first-team All-IFL honors in 2019, and has won four IFL Offensive Player of the Week awards in his two seasons in the league (three in 2019, one in 2021). Tucson as a team has won just three in that same span.

"Daquan is a difference maker," Coach Wooten says of his quarterback. "As a rookie when I first signed him, I knew he was special, and he showed the world -- being the first rookie to ever win the MVP. He works hard, dedicates himself to be successful, and now he wants to prove that he's the best quarterback in the league. I'm excited to have him help us with our pursuit to be the top team in the Indoor Football League."

Before going pro, Neal played three years at Elizabeth City State University in North Carolina. An All-CIAA Honorable Mention in his senior season for the Vikings, Neal accounted for 25 touchdowns on 3,218 yards passing, while rushing for 684 yards, and leading his team to a SPIRAL Tropical Bowl invitation.

The Sugar Skulls will play eight regular-season home games at Tucson Arena beginning in March, with the 16-game regular season running through July. The IFL playoffs will begin in late July. The 2022 IFL schedule was released last week.

• Discuss this story on the Indoor Football League message board...

Indoor Football League Stories from November 3, 2021

The opinions expressed in this release are those of the organization issuing it, and do not necessarily reflect the thoughts or opinions of OurSports Central or its staff.

Other Recent Tucson Sugar Skulls Stories

Sports Statistics from the Stats Crew
OurSports Central