Coach Mike Locksley will start to incorporate his fast paced spread offense in spring practice. Any successful offense has a quality guy at quarterback and that is especially true in a spread offense. The million dollar question is: Who will be the Lobo's starting QB in 2009?
The Front Runner:
Donovan Porterie 6-foot-3, 210 lbs. Senior
Last year's 2008 season was cut short after suffering a torn ACL in the fourth game of the year. Before that, Porterie completed 67% of his passes and had a zero to five TD/INT ratio. The completion percentage was good by anyone's standards, but Porterie seemed to struggle making decisions and forced some footballs.
It was obvious to see that Porterie was still adapting to his almost all new offensive line and inexperienced new receiver group. It was also very apparent that Donovan was instructed to "stay healthy" and not run the ball. This seemed to limit his game and prevented him from using his very underrated speed and agility.
Despite his early struggles last year he still has completed 59% of his passes in three years as a starter and will now step into a scheme which will allow him to both run and pass. Donovan Porterie is a very good athlete and has a very good arm. He has the potential to be an all conference player and if he can get healthy should be the starting quarterback on opening day in College Station, Texas.
The Dark Horse:
Brad Gruner 6-foot-2, 220 lbs. Sophomore
Stepped in as the starter for Donovan Porterie in 2008. Gruner struggled throwing the football with consistency in 2008 and at times looked overwhelmed. However, he showed he could run the ball very well and also showed a very strong arm.
He has all the tangibles to make a good dual threat QB and now has great experience under his belt. Gruner will have the luxury of being 100% healthy in the spring (unlike Porterie) and has every physical tool.
The Young and Highly Touted:
Emmanuel Yeager 6-foot-2, 195 lbs. Freshmen
The D.C. product is already on campus and will compete in spring football. Yeager puts great spin on the football, has very good arm strength and is very elusive when he steps out of the pocket. Being on campus early and healthy will obviously help his cause. The young man is a playmaker and has all the physical tools to plays as a true Freshmen.
Darren Jones 6-foot-3, 195 lbs. Freshmen
Jones is not quite as polished a passer as Emmanuel Yeager and will have a late start compared to all the other guys (arriving in the fall), but his skill set very well may be superior to everyone else's in the quarterback group. It is strongly believed that Jones has big time potential and could make a difference at many different positions. He will either likely redshirt or be a true freshmen star.
Publisher's Note: Joe Baca is new to the Loboland.com Football Staff, expect to see more high quality content from him as we move closer to the Spring Game.