Morgantown, West Virginia – It’s August 18th, exactly two weeks from the Backyard Brawl, one of the most important games in recent West Virginia football history, and Neal Brown hasn’t named a starting quarterback.
In fact, his four potential starters – JT Daniels, Garrett Greene, Nicco Marchiol and Will “Goose” Crowder – are all still getting the exact same amount of reps with the first team, which absolutely no sense at all.
Clearly, when it’s all said and done, JT Daniels will be the starting quarterback for the Mountaineers on September 1st against Pitt. You don’t bring in a player of caliber to have him sit on the bench, or play behind three players that have little to no experience.
So why does Neal Brown refuse to name Daniels the starter?
Brown is under the impression that competition among his players make them hungrier, which is typically true. But at this point – 14 days away from kickoff – the competition should be over.
JT Daniels should have been getting every single first team rep for the past month. While it’s virtuous to attempt to keep his other three quarterbacks engaged and hungry, it’s ultimately going to hurt what matters most…the first team, the team that will play the majority of the game.
Brown is essentially splitting meaningful reps in four among Daniels, Greene, Marchiol and Crowder. Daniels will almost certainly get more than 90% of the actual snaps in games with Greene, Marchiol and Crowder representing the other 10%.
The illusion of competition is simply not going to make this team better. Rather, it will temporarily appease Greene, Marchiol and Crowder while robbing Daniels of the much-needed time he needs with first team wide receivers, running back, tight end(s) and offensive line.
Neal Brown must reconsider this ineffective plan of splitting reps among his four quarterbacks now and in the future. Two weeks from showtime, it’s time for the starter to be known and producing with the first team.