Auburn senior wide receiver Emory Blake created quite a stir on Wednesday during SEC Media Days when he said quarterback Kiehl Frazier‘s arm was the strongest he had seen since former Auburn quarterback and 2010 Heisman Trophy winner Cam Newton.
Tight end Philip Lutzenkirchen, who is a team captain and leader, said he’s also noticed a strength in Frazier’s game. The senior added Frazier has began accepting more blame and has become more of a leader himself since the Tigers’ dismal 9-5 season last year.
What does all of this mean for the sophomore quarterback who is currently engaged in a battle for the starting position with 2011 starter Clint Moseley? Simply put, the spot is almost won.
Preseason practice opens for the Tigers on Aug. 1, and with freshman quarterback Zeke Pike sent home for an indefinitely on June 25 after being arrested, Frazier and Moseley will work solely with the first and second string offenses. The only question left is how long will Moseley still have a chance to prove he should be the first-string playcaller.
Frazier’s run-first mentality of 2011 will not remain this season, not only because of this strides in throwing, but also with new coordinator Scot Loeffler‘s offense. Loeffler has worked with quarterbacks such as Tom Brady at Michigan and Tim Tebow at Florida, which opens the door a little more for a promising career for the true sophomore.
While Auburn continues to search for a secondary receiver to produce behind Blake, who caught 30 percent of the team’s passes last year, Loeffler’s offensive system favors throwing to a big tight end, which is role Lutzenkirchen fits perfectly.
For the third time in its four years under Coach Gene Chizik, Auburn will enter fall practices still searching for a starter quarterback. However, the question this season it doesn’t seem to be who will be choosen, it is how long will it take for Frazier to be the only quarterback taking snaps from center Reese Dismukes.