AJ Black: Well Friday was a sobering experience for the BC football team and their fan base. Not only were the Eagles shut out at home by Florida State, but they also lost quarterback Darius Wade for the remainder of the season when he broke his ankle. Dan, this is tough news, but the team is going to have to move forward. Quickly, who do you hope takes over the starting QB role and why?
Dan Rubin: You know, nobody was perhaps more anti-Troy Flutie than me. I really felt like his passing ability was probably the best out of the three quarterbacks, but where Steve Addazio's run-first mentality dictated against that, I felt like he probably wasn't the best option. But the more and more I think about it, I think Flutie should be starting.
That's not a knock against Jeff Smith at all. I don't like starting true freshmen. They need time to develop skills and acclimate to the playbook without being thrown into key game situations. We saw it with Chase Rettig during his freshman year - forced into action midway through his freshman year, Spaz burned his redshirt. Rettig wound up never recovering. He should've been holding a clipboard and absorbing the speed of the college game.
When it comes to Smith, I don't want to see his development stunted because the offensive line continues to be a work in progress. The running game's struggled this year due to a number of combinations. I would rather see a quarterback who has already learned the offense for a year at least start out to show him how to do it, and then, if he's not effective, we go to the raw rookie.
I realize that may require a change in thinking that I don't think BC is going to do, and I don't mean that in a bad way. I detailed that over the weekend in my post about where BC goes from here.
There's many different layers, and I feel like I'm barely scratching the surface of the discussion.
AJ - what's your take here?
AJ Black: See I'm going to have to go with Jeff Smith. I've watched the wide receivers enough to realize that maybe utilizing them frequently is probably not the best option. I agree, the offensive line isn't up to par...yet. However, the one thing that I trust Steve Addazio to fix is that group. The wide receivers on the other hand may be harder to fix. You can't teach speed. Therefore I want an option quarterback. Jeff Smith may be young, but to quote Coach JF, he has that "it quality", the characteristic that flashes for players who want the ball to win games. He may make mistakes but given the talent on the team, I think he is the best fit for the talent we have.
Dan, I have seen tweets/Fanposts etc mentioning transfer Brendan Nosovitch as an option. Why do you not see this as a possibility?
Dan Rubin: Absolutely not. Brendan Nosovitch was never brought into BC to play quarterback. Maybe the Eagles play a couple of trick plays where he can throw the ball - double pass options and whatnot. But he's not a quarterback anymore.
For starters, we spoke with members inside the larger Boston College coaching staff prior to the season when Nosovitch was getting ready to land in Chestnut Hill. It was made clear to us that he was coming in as a tight end/H-back.
Second, Nosovitch doesn't know the offensive playbook as a quarterback any more than Jeff Smith, who was specifically recruited to play the position. He also doesn't have the tools or physical abilities necessary to run the spread offense Addazio employs. Again - not a knock against him. But you don't want to fit a square peg into a circle hole.
He's 6'1", 221 pounds and ran the ball three times for 12 yards in two years at South Carolina. He's a stand up quarterback. He's not a Boston College quarterback.
AJ - one of the other names that gets thrown around is Elijah Robinson. He was converted from quarterback to the wide receiver position at his own request during the preseason. Could he be one of the names thrown out there if Smith or Flutie falter?
AJ Black: Could it happen? Sure. Will it? I wouldn't count on it. BC needs to find something from either Flutie or Smith, and I can't imagine they will yo-yo a player who just switched positions. If they were thinking of moving him back to QB, he would have to basically relearn the playbook from another position. Plus BC is struggling at the wide receiver position, and from accounts from camp Robinson was catching on quickly, I'd rather see BC work him at WR. The next QB is going to be either Flutie or Smith
Alright Dan, I know who you want to be QB, but who will be the starter on Saturday?
Dan Rubin: Calling it now - I think it's going to be Jeff Smith.
AJ Black: I totally agree with you, I don't think that the BC fanbase is going to be happy about it, but I bet a) Addazio doesn't name a starter on his depth chart this week and b) it will be Jeff Smith that comes out of the huddle first on Saturday.