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Saturday, February 25, 2012

Who Will Quarterback the Irish in 2012?

If you are a loyal reader previously you have read it here on Notre Dame Subway Alumni Station (our formal moniker).  On just about every Irish website, competing Blogs, on national sports websites, in the printed media and it’s been talked to death on Notre Dame friendly Bulletin Boards.  Bleacher Report spins a shallow story at least daily concerning it.  Most speculate or lay out the options.  Instead of that dribble here is what we think.
Who Will Quarterback the Irish in 2012?

Of course the dismal quarterback play of 2011 is still fresh in all our minds.  The picks in the red zone.  The picks in the end zone, the numerous almost picks, the fumble and subsequent touchdown on the four yard line, the numerous bonehead QB decisions.  They collectively cost us at least three games, maybe four, you never know since the errors simply put the games away and out of our reach.  You could tell they were bad QB decisions by Coach Brian Kelly going ballistic and turning purple on the sidelines.

The Irish start spring practice March 21st and play the Blue-Gold Game April 21st.  15 authorized practices.  Expect some potential crappy late winter “Bend” weather to contend with, limiting the Team to the Loftus Center.  Not much time.  Four quarterbacks to evaluate.  We have a new offensive coordinator looking to assert himself.  A junior, a sophomore, a redshirt freshman and a freshman all vying to be the next “Golden Boy”.  A wide open competition according to Kelly and his statement about Gunner Kiel getting a chance this spring.  At least that is what we should expect after that we went through last year.

If freshman Gunner Kiel starts for the Irish, we are in big, big trouble once again.  What does that have to say concerning our QB talent and experience?  Suffering through a freshman quarterback starting yet once again could be deadly for the Irish considering the schedule.

If junior Tommy Rees starts in Dublin, we are déjà vu all over again and folks will be jumping off the bandwagon often and early.

If sophomore Andrew Hendrix starts, he has progressed a long way and the offense can grow with him.  That appears the message.

If redshirt freshman Everett Golson starts, stand back and look out Michigan, USC, Oklahoma and the rest of the 2012 schedule.  He has got to be the QB derby winner.

Most of the limited time has to be devoted to Kiel and Golson this spring.  We pretty much know what Rees and Hendrix can and cannot do.  Expect no decision, no announcement after the Blue-Gold Game.  Why invite transfers, unrest, and the development of poor work and improvement habits during the off-season?  Competition is a good and healthy thing.

Last year Rees and Crist wore red jerseys during the Blue-Gold Game.  It will be a sign who if anyone wears one this year.

Charlie Weis and Brian Kelly before have gone into spring practice with four quarterbacks competing for depth chart positions and repetitions in the fall.  The results have been mixed trying to placate for everyone wanting to start.  Both have complained that by the time fall camp rolls around, they do not have the time to train and develop four quarterbacks with time and meaningful repetitions leading the offense. 

Here is something we have never understood.  Something that has always bothered us was the fact that there is not enough time or resources to develop four quarterbacks.  We keep hearing not enough repetitions are available.  Why can’t the number 3 and number 4 quarterback spend time with a hobbled together offense and defense instead just standing and watching the 1 and 2 quarterbacks work with the number one offense and the scout team defense.  Tape all work and repetitions for later review and comment.  While its’ not the same as standing under center with the first team defense it will help with rhythm, reading defenses, snap counts, checking off, learning plays, etc. 

No one here at the Station has ever played college football.  So just maybe we are the biggest fools of all.

Without the benefit of watching limited playing time and vanilla play calling opportunities during the Blue-Gold Game, here is our early predictions.  Barring injuries, personal problems, and the like.

Everett Golson will start in Dublin.

Andrew Hendrix will be second on the depth chart but may transfer.

Tommy Rees will be third on the depth chart, accept his new role however may transfer.

Gunner Kiel will red-shirt.
Everett Golson
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Anonymous said...

If Gunner starts, that means all others were worse. Might be another Clausen, Quinn, era. Rees will probably stick around, he's not pro bound and is a decent backup. Like Sharply.

Is Crist able to start this year or does he have to wait?

Grim Jack

Subway Alumni said...

Crist can play immediately since he has gradulated and one year of eligible playing since Charlie re-shirted him.

Hope he can make an impact for Weis.

I agree about Rees and if Hendrix does not see himself as at least number 2, color him gone.

Subway Alumni

kreyfish said...

Lots of QB questions and I don't think the B/G game will answer most of those questions. But, here's my take...

Gunner MUST redshirt. He is the future of the position.

Rees...we've seen all there is to see there. But that said, he did an outstanding job coming in after Crist went down and has been commended for the job he did. But we know what he's got, or better, what he hasn't got. It's time for BK to run HIS offense instead of tayloring it to someone who doesn't have the full skill set.

So, its up to Hendrix and Golson to battle it out. Frankly, I like Hendrix...love his attitude and his quick release. But, I haven't seen Golson and I feel like there would be a huge learing curve should be beoome the starter in Dublin.

I think 2012 will be interesting to say the least. Let's just hope we can keep the dumb mistakes to a minimum.