On this week's podcast, Dan Lyons and I discussed the quarterbacks on the roster, thinking position switches or transfers seemed likely down the road. That was centered mainly on the A.J. Long vs. Austin Wilson, and Eric Dungey vs. Kenterius Womack questions, respectively, figuring if one took the reins as the starting passer, the other three might look elsewhere.
It seems that rather than wait for that moment to reveal itself, Syracuse Orange offensive coordinator Tim Lester's just going to go ahead and address it now. By telling us that one or both of Dungey and Womack will not be playing QB for SU. As he told Syracuse.com's Stephen Bailey:
"By the end of next spring, between the two of them, I really don't want them both playing quarterback...
I'm excited because everything is in the search for finding one good quarterback, because that changes everything. So letting everybody have a really good shot to play that position is important, and it's a feather in your cap that they'll both be able to play something else down the road."
Lester goes on to talk about the athleticism he sees from both. He sees the tall, bigger Dungey as a potential safety or tight end down the road. On the other hand, he's pushing for Womack, who only weighs in at 170 pounds, to up his strength to get ready for the college game. He doesn't seem to tip his hand as to which one he's leaning toward switching, though. And does seem to be giving both a fair shake to potentially win the job down the road:
"You're going to take your time trying to find a great quarterback, period," Lester said. "Then, once I'm 100 percent sure that he's not a great, great, great quarterback, you (make the decision). It doesn't just happen overnight. I'm not going to have a quick trigger when I think I have two guys who have huge upside.
... They're both smart, athletic and they're into it, but the learning curve of a quarterback is hilarious. It'll get worse before it gets better."
Overall, not the most or least encouraging feedback regarding both freshman passers, but as long as both get a shot, it's tough to complain too much about what Lester's saying. Now, other schools may be able to use this against us -- "pick Syracuse and they'll switch you to another position the first day you arrive" -- and personally, I'd rather wait for this type of talk until we're at the point of making a decision (and see some results to back that up). But kids commit all the time knowing there's one spot and if they don't get it, they live with the decision. Just hoping this doesn't turn off either from continuing to try at QB for the time being.
And as our own Kevin Wall asked when these piece of news came out:
Now that he's coming up on the one-year mark as Syracuse offensive coordinator, you're starting to see the hallmarks of Lester's strategy. Quarterback play will be key, and if you take nothing else from this, it should be that he'll be pushing to find the best player to fill that position, whether he's currently on the roster or not. What else would you expect from a guy who almost played under center for Steve Spurrier at Florida?