Ohio State football: Patience might pay off big-time in Buckeyes QB battle
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All comes down to Meyer’s inability to pick a # 1 QB. When scouts are raving about Haskins and, his potential NFL top 5 tools, Meyer cannot go all in. Yes, Burrow is a nice QB. But, Haskins is at a different level. “The topic”.
— Thomas M Kirkpatrick (@TKirkpatrick09) April 29, 2018
Urban Meyer resisted any urge to rush into a decision at the most important position on his roster, and Ohio State might wind up better for it this season. There was no reason for the Buckeyes to go all-in during the spring, when that’s really just when the cards are being shuffled. And if allowing that competition to play out without a daily pecking order being posted results in Joe Burrow and Dwayne Haskins sticking around for training camp, Ohio State will again be loaded in a way that few other programs could dream of at quarterback.
Initially, yes, I was among those pushing Meyer to make a choice and set the course for the offense heading into the offseason. Maybe Burrow could still make that happen by electing to use his degree to leave as a graduate transfer, but he proved more than capable of being a successful, full-time option to lead the Buckeyes back to a Big Ten title this season. Haskins undoubtedly has a huge upside, thanks largely to his arm strength that will have NFL scouts drooling. But Burrow looks pretty close to the complete package as a passer as well, and he’s not just some afterthought on the Ohio State roster.
If Burrow hits the open market, the line for his services is going to be absurdly long and will be stocked with big-time programs that see him as a difference-making quarterback. So why would Ohio State have been in a rush to part ways with Burrow by throwing all of its weight behind Haskins if it didn’t have to in the spring? Spring games always come with a grain of salt, but in a semi-competitive setting with a huge crowd watching him work, Burrow showed that he has all the tools to be a major weapon in Meyer’s power-spread offense.
Haskins absolutely did the same by delivering some eye-popping deep throws. And, of course, he has the experience of coming off the bench to lead the impressive comeback victory at Michigan last season. But Meyer has also consistently, without fail, listed those two as in a dead heat dating back to the race to be the No. 2 quarterback behind J.T. Barrett. Assuming that was the complete truth, there was no need for the Buckeyes to push all their chips into the middle in a coin-flip situation.
Looking back on it, I think I was wrong to expect that a decision needed to be reached by the spring game or shortly after. At this point, it’s hard to find much fault with the way Ohio State handled its latest quarterback competition, and the fairness and patience it showed could pay off with a pair of winning hands.
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