The Huskies’ first game of the 2014 season is less than two weeks away, but the man who will take snaps in that contest vs. Hawaii is still very much up in the air.
Chris Petersen and his coaching staff are no closer to choosing a starter than they were when training camp started at the beginning of the month, but it’s not for a lack of familiarity. They’ve seen plenty from both sophomore Jeff Lindquist and redshirt freshman Troy Williams, but the two are still as even as could be.
The same can be said for sophomore Cyler Miles, who is suspended for the Hawaii game but very much in the conversation to be the No. 1 quarterback for the rest of the season.
“I think these guys have made it difficult,” offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Jonathan Smith said Saturday after an open scrimmage at Husky Stadium. “Each of them bring some different pieces to the puzzle. (They have) different skill sets. We’ve gotta get it right, and so we put a lot of energy and time into it, and we’ll get it right.”
Though Miles missed all of spring practice, he’s evened up well with Lindquist and Williams.
“You can make a case for all of those guys, you really can,” Petersen said. “It’s probably gonna be splitting hairs when it comes down to it, really. We watched them in spring, we’ve watched them out here. No one’s really taken a commanding lead.”
The trio had equal opportunities to state their case in Saturday’s scrimmage in front of a smattering of fans, as did freshman K.J. Carta-Samuels. Lindquist seemed to have the most consistent day, though Miles showed his arm strength and mobility and Williams had his moments.
Petersen, who makes no bones about his preference to build around his quarterback, has stated from the start that the two things he looks for are accuracy and decision-making. So, how are those coming along?
“I think that we’re making fairly decent progress with our decision-making. I think the accuracy definitely needs to improve,” he said.
It may seem like the Huskies are embracing being as cryptic as possible with the quarterback situation, but Petersen contends they’re trying to be anything but.
“We’re not really trying to keep it a secret. I don’t think that gives us some huge advantage to (not) tell the opponent who the guy is,” he said. “We’re just still trying to figure it out. … We haven’t really got that far.”
Once they do figure it out, the hope is the decision is going to stick for the long run.
“Whoever’s going to be the guy is gonna go and he’s gonna get his first opportunity, and hopefully he does some good things,” Petersen said. “And if he can’t get it done, try somebody else.”