Syracuse Orange head coach Scott Shafer made his first public comments since the demotion of OC George McDonald and the injury that will sideline Terrel Hunt for 4-6 weeks in his weekly interview with Matt Park on Cuse.com.
So what did we learn?
First and foremost, SU is not ready to just hand the keys over to Austin Wilson. In fact, Syracuse will likely take on the Florida State Seminoles with a two-quarterback approach.
"Austin been out there and he's done some good things out there. A.J. has done an extremely good job throughout the course of practice against our No. 1 defense to the point where he was scout team player of the week the last two or three weeks. And he's going against the 1s, and a lot of comments from the defensive kids, 'Man that kid is pretty good.'
"When I look at it, it’s going to be less of a competition as to which guy does better this week during practice. Let’s come up with a plan. If we choose to use two guys, let’s use two guys and give them pieces of the game plan … In an ideal world, you’d love to have one quarterback who can do all those things. But right now the reality is we don’t want to put that weight on any singular player."
"But now we’re going to move forward this week and try to develop a plan for Austin and AJ and have Mitch ready to go as well."
"I think all three of those young men have the skill sets to do it. here’s definitely a drop-off because Terrel’s a very good quarterback and his development just continued to ramp up. But now with him out, we go to the next ballplayer up."
Call me crazy but that's probably a smart idea, at least for right now. Play to Wilson's and Long's strengths and let them both get as good as possible at the things they can do really well. Asking either to take on full responsibility with the FSU defense coming up in a couple days is lunacy. Not that we have much choice, I suppose.
If anything, and you hate to put it this way, but you can almost just consider the Florida State game a scrimmage. Or at the very least, use this game as a way to see how each guy handles adversity and whether or not they can create plays. At the end of it, you might come away with a better idea of the one guy who can take the helm.