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NCAA Football LSU TigersSEC Football

Did LSU Find Zach Mettenberger’s Successor on the Recruiting Trail?

Beth Hall-USA TODAY Sports

LSU has had problems at the quarterback position for years and have masked it to a degree with stellar defense. With Zach Mettenberger behind center more one more season, one of two of this year’s quarterback recruits needs to develop into a trusted starter.

The Bayou Bengals signed a classic pocket-passer quarterback when they inked Hayden Rettig (Los Angeles, Ca. Cathedral) last spring and doubled down at the quarterback position when they signed Anthony Jennings (Marietta, Ga. Marietta), who has dual-threat ability behind center.

Both are four-star recruits and will benefit from redshirting as true freshmen while Mettenberger starts to physically mature and develop. The biggest benefit will be learning the playbook before being thrust into the position before either is ready and risk stunting their development.

Rettig stands 6-3 and at 205 pounds needs to add 20 pounds to his frame to survive playing against the immensely talented defenses he’ll face in the SEC. He has good arm talent though and has one of the stronger arms in this class. He is able to read defenses and make the correct decisions based on what the defense gives him, shows great anticipation and his quick release doesn’t hinder his accuracy.

Jennings on the other hand is not as smooth or refined as a passer and has a tendency to be sloppy when it comes to his footwork. He is a capable passer who can deliver the ball with some velocity when he’s set with his feet, and doesn’t always look to tuck and run like other dual-threat quarterbacks have been known to do. He won’t look as comfortable as Rettig in the pocket and may be a candidate to switch positions if he gets beats out at quarterback.

Between the two, I would place my money on Rettig getting the first crack to replace Mettenberger, unless they sign a five-star prospect or top junior college passer next year, but patience will be needed for both–something that may be running thin at that position for LSU fans.

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Patrick is the host of “The Wake-up Call,” on Sportstownchicago.com airing Wednesday mornings from 8-10. View his show’s website here.