The most talked about QB competition is South Florida was finally settled on Tuesday when Mark Richt named Malik Rosier as the starting QB to open the season. This was a battle that was pretty much narrowed down to two prior to Saturday’s scrimmage. This was after Richt called out the team’s offense and challenged them to step up on Saturday.
“He showed up focused every day on his job,’’ Richt said. “He was disciplined in his fundamentals, his footwork, his reads, his passing fundamentals. And he was hitting his target. He did a very good job.”
Richt said Rosier stood out above the rest, but not by “an unbelievable amount,’’ although “it was apparent he was having the best camp. There was enough of a difference to feel comfortable that Malik is the guy.’’
“Evan is a great competitor,’’ Richt said “Anytime you don’t get what you’re fighting for, it’s tough. I thought he handled it like a champion. He practiced like a champion. That’s the thing that I tell him – you keep competing. You keep playing. Last year, trying to decide who No. 2 was, that thing changed about three times throughout the season.
Evan Shirriffs will back up Rosier as the team get set to play Bethune-Cookman on Saturday September 2nd. Rosier is the only QB on the team with any extended playing time. He’s a red shirt junior.
For Hurricanes fans, this may at least in the short term come as a disappointment. Many were hyped up expecting freshman N’Kosi Perry to become the future of the program. However according to Richt, he wasn’t ready yet to be able to take the reigns left vacant by Brad Kaaya who left a year early to join the NFL.
Back to the scrimmages, Rosier, who took the many of the first team offensive snaps after two scrimmages was 25-39 for 441 yards 5 TDs and 1 INT. Much better numbers than any other of the QBs vying for the starting job. Clearly as far as performance is concerned, Rosier stepped up and earned the job.
What does this mean for the Canes moving forward? Well with Rosier they get a dual threat QB, which is the type of QB Richt wants to run in his offensive system. The way college football is being played today, especially in the ACC, having a mobile QB is essential in being able to compete for a conference title. Rosier can run, we know that, during the Spring and in Fall camp he’s proven to be a pretty accurate passer as well.
Does this mean that the competition is completely over? Probably not, depending on Rosier’s early season performance, he will probably be on a short lease. Against Bethune-Cookman we may see Shirriffs and Perry just because the game is probably going to be a blow out.
As for Perry the coaching staff isn’t going to rule using him in certain packages, which should be fun to watch. For now Malik Rosier is the man in Coral Gables. He earned the job and it’s probably worth trusting Richt with regards to how he handled the entire process. He kind of knows a thing or two about the position.