(Written by Ken Crawford)
For those who haven’t heard, Jared Goff has been named the starting quarterback.
This was a moderate surprise to those who have believed the rumor mill dating back to the 2012 season that Zack Kline was the program’s savior, but for those who had been paying attention, it wasn’t that much of a surprise:
- Coach Sonny has long said that the keys to being his QB was consistency, accuracy and quick decision making. Who’s been most consistent since Spring practice? Who’s the only one who can somewhat routinely hit the trash can in their throwing drill (accuracy)? I think the thing that has been hindering Goff has been the decision making, but the word on the street is that he’s improved dramatically since Spring practice and is doing as well if not better than Kline.
- Which QB was recruited by Sonny? I think the tie goes to the guy that the head coach recruited.
- As Dykes said in his comments, Goff isn’t really a “true-freshman”, he’s an early-enrolled freshman. Being here for spring practice, and then having the time between then and now to absorb the system makes a WORLD of difference in regards to freshmen QBs.
- Kline just threw too many interceptions in practice to make his case. He may have one heck of an arm, but the new offense is predicated more on accurate short throws instead of long passes.
And here’s the kicker, the lore around Kline, is just that: lore. Lot’s of people were sick of Maynard last year. Lot’s of people wanted a change. And is the case on every team where the starting quarterback is struggling, the backup QB is the knight in shining armor ready to save the team. But the few times I saw him play in practices I was never really overly impressed. That’s not to say he didn’t have potential. That’s not to say he wouldn’t have been a better choice than Maynard. But it is to say he was no miracle savior.
But the rumor mill/peanut gallery/fanciful dreamer crowd was just too strong in creating a fairy tale that Kline was this semi-mythic recruit destined to save the program once he was given the chance.
News flash: It just wasn’t based on facts.
This if of course not to say that Goff was for sure the right choice. I don’t really know (and unless you’ve been at all the practices, you don’t know either). But what I do know is that this shouldn’t be a shocking surprise. Goff earned being named the starting QB and most showed the characteristics that make a good QB, particularly in Dykes system. I’m looking forward to seeing him perform on 8/31.