The Grass is Greener on the Other Side

Morgantown, West Virginia – West Virginia quarterback Jarret Doege is a perfectly average, serviceable, average quarterback that doesn’t lose games for the Mountaineers but also doesn’t win games either.

He’s fine.  Jarret Doege is experienced, he grades out well on Pro Football Focus every week, his stats are very good, his arm strength is okay, but unfortunately it has become abundantly clear that he is not going to lead West Virginia to a Big 12 Championship.

He’s just not.  Doege is not comfortable enough in the pocket, he doesn’t make big throws at big times and he lacks mobility.  The absence of mobility is perhaps the most pressing issue.

West Virginia runs an offense that requires a mobile quarterback.  A Zone Read offense sans a mobile quarterback is not a Zone Read offense.  It’s a very bland, very predictable offense that easily stopped.

And this is the problem with the Mountaineers under Jarret Doege.  He is not a threat to keep the ball on read plays and so the opposing defense can key on West Virginia running backs Leddie Brown and Alec Sinkfield.

This, of course, makes West Virginia one-dimensional.  A team with a one-dimensional offense in the Big 12 will not get many wins, even with one of the best defenses in the country.

Most successful college teams use a dual threat quarterback because as the phrase dual threat implies, they are a dual threat.  

Mobile quarterbacks can escape pressure and create plays when the pocket collapses and they have to make thing happen with their feet.  Having a mobile quarterback is particularly important when a team has an average or offensive line.  A mobile quarterback adds a whole new dynamic to the West Virginia offense.

Enter precocious, highly-touted young freshman Garrett Greene.  Greene is what Doege is not – he’s confident, he moves well, he adds a whole new dimension to the offense and he’s a winner, a competitor.  

Although Greene is only a freshman, he has a different level of confidence and spunk than a typical first year player, and he wants to play right now.  Neal Brown, let’s get creative and play the freshman at the very least when the offense sputters and needs a jolt.

I’m very aware that the backup quarterback is always the fans most liked player on team, but this isn’t simply a case of the grass is greener on the other side, Garrett Greene is truly the player on the West Virginia roster that can kick start real change and progress for the Mountaineers.

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Brad Smith
Brad Smith, "The Voice of Morgantown", is the most trusted, accomplished name in West Virginia sports journalism. Smith is the foremost, preeminent authority on West Virginia athletics and a lifelong fan of the Mountaineers. Smith, a proud graduate of West Virginia University, resides in Morgantown most of the year, but has a home in Jacksonville, Florida, where he lives during the winter.