Florida Gators head coach Will Muschamp has already received some criticism for his decision to play one of his two sophomore quarterbacks in the first quarter and rotate in the other in the second quarter before reevaluating the situation at halftime of the season opener on Saturday against Bowling Green.
But the way his offensive coordinator Brent Pease and signal callers all tell it, the decision is at least fair to all parties involved even if it is a not typical.
“I think it is a little bit [unusual]. I think in this circumstance, because of how they both progressed and how they’ve shown their leadership skills, I’m not really worried about it right now,” Pease said on Monday. “In some situations I’ve been in before, I’d say, ‘Yeah.’ I don’t think it is [a problem for] this team because of their maturity and how they’ve kind of come along.
“I think when the lights come on it’s going to be different for each kid. Hopefully they’re both prepared and they accept the challenge.”
Pease said Jacoby Brissett and Jeff Driskel both deserve the opportunity to play in the first game because of how hard they have practiced throughout the offseason and the level of improvement that each has shown over the last few months.
“They have both really done a good job in how they’ve handled the situation and how they progressed,” he said. “I think it would be hard to name a starter right now because what would you be telling the other kid? If they had separated from each other, yeah, but they both have really made major progress and they both have really done good things. We got a situation in a game where we can play them. There’s been situations in college football and even in the NFL where both guys have played.”
Driskel, who of course wants the starting job all to himself just like Brissett does, explained that there is not much more he or his teammate can ask for then a fair shot to compete for the full-time job.
“I thought they were going to name a starter,” he said, “but I knew it was going to be difficult for them, and I wouldn’t want to be the guy to have to pick between us two because, like I said, we’ve both been performing so well.
“Obviously I’d like to play the first but that doesn’t matter. We’re both going to play and we’re both going to try to do the same thing. We’re on the same team, so I’ll be cheering for him and he’ll be cheering for me.”
Driskel added, “Ever since the spring, [a fair shot is] what we’ve both wanted and that’s what we’ve both got. We both took advantage of our opportunity and this Saturday is just one more chance.”
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