CSU Quarterback Battle is a Three-Man Race
This article was republished with permission from The Collegian, the student newspaper at Colorado State University, a part of the Rocky Mountain Student Media Corp.
After almost a full week of fall camp, Colorado State coach Mike Bobo is no closer to naming a starting quarterback than he was three months ago during spring ball.
For much of the spring and summer it was expected that the QB race was a two-man competition, but after Tuesday’s practice, Bobo made it clear that is not the case.
“Right now, it’s a three-man race,” Bobo said. “Everyone says it’s Nicks Stevens and Faton Bauta, but right now Collin Hill is in the mix.
Hill, a true freshman from Moore, South Carolina, has impressed Bobo throughout fall camp. Much of the position he’s in right now comes from the advantage he had from arriving early to the university last spring. Bobo said that he does not think of Hill as really being a freshman because of the fact that he has already been around the program and the coaches expectations for some time.
Stevens, Bauta, and Hill have all been reshuffled thus far in camp, as Bobo changes the order every day based on their performance from the previous practice. He has even moved around the quarterbacks in the midst of practice based on what he sees from them that day.
He has made it clear what he wants from his quarterbacks and if one the guys is not getting it done, he moves on to the next one.
The first true opportunity for the quarterbacks to make their mark during a live period will come during Thursday night’s closed scrimmage.
“The first big test will be the scrimmage,” Bobo said. “We’ll have a gameplan, they’ll know what we will be running, so we will be able to see who can go out there and execute.”
Rebounding from day five
After a lackluster practice on day five of fall camp for the Colorado State Rams coach Mike Bobo challenged his players. If they wanted to be a competitive football team this season they needed to come out with same energy that they brought when camp started.
On day six, the players responded to Bobo’s challenge.
“I thought it was a good day,” Bobo said after practice. “Basically, the message after practice was, thank you. We came out and practiced like Ram football players should. It wasn’t perfect but we went to work and that’s what I wanted.”
Bobo’s main qualm after the day five practice was that they weren’t bringing the effort he needed to see. It’s only the first week of camp, he does not expect them to be perfect execution wise, but he expects them to come to practice every day ready to compete hard. Not to be complacent with being a division one football player.
“Yesterday we didn’t have very much energy at practice,” quarterback Nick Stevens said. “Today, I thought we had a lot of energy and a lot of enthusiasm. We responded to that challenge really really well. We just need to keep that pace and keep that energy at every practice.”
No Problem with depth at Running Back
Coming into the new season, the Rams looked to be in good position with returning ball carriers Dayln Dawkins and Izzy Matthews.
Dawkins and Matthews continue to impress coaches and they are still expected to be offensive leaders, they just might have some more company than they originally thought.
Freshman Marvin Kinsey Jr.,Darius May, and Rashaad Boddie have continually impressed Bobo during fall camp.
May was singled out for his attention to detail, while Kinsey has been turning heads with his playmaking abilities. Boddie is a big, physical runner who should have no problem with the jump in physicality at the collegiate level.
All of them could expect to see playing time at some point in the season.
Peters working at fullback
Junior running back Bryce Peters was once again a standout player during the spring. With Matthews and Dawkins sidelined for portions of spring camp, Peters was able to step in and make the most of his opportunities.
Now with the logjam at running back, Peters has been working with the fullbacks to try and find a niche in the fall.
“Bryce will play a lot for us this year,” Bobo said. “He’s doing a great job on special teams. He’ll be a guy, that if need be, (he) could play both positions in the backfield.
Wide Receivers seeing red
Three of the Rams returning receivers continue to be limited in practice while dealing with minor injuries. Xavier Williams, Olabisi Johnson and Elroy Masters are all stuck in red jerseys, meaning they are held out from contact during practice.
Early fall standout and juco transfer Michael Gallup, who spent the previous two days in a red jersey, participated fully on Tuesday.
Collegian Sports Reporter Eric Wolf can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @Eric_Wolf5