Tennessee Freshman Quarterback Riley Ferguson Gunning for Starting Job

By Patrick Schmidt
Randy Sartin-USA TODAY Sports

Tennessee freshman quarterback, Riley Ferguson (Matthews, Nc. Butler) certainly isn’t lacking in confidence, a trait that is a prerequisite to play the position in the vaunted SEC where opposing defenses are feeder systems for the NFL. He thinks he should be the starting quarterback this season for the Volunteers.

Rising junior Justin Worley and redshirt freshman Nathan Peterman are the two front-runners to take over for Tyler Bray who left Knoxville early for the NFL, but that didn’t stop Ferguson from telling Patrick Brown of the Chattanooga Times Free Press he isn’t about to shy away from any competition.

“There’s going to be people above me, but I just have to show my coaches and everybody around me on my team that I can get the job done and I can be the starter.”

This is not the first that the four-star recruit has shown off his air of confidence that borders on cockiness. On the day after signing day, Ferguson was asked by Dave Hooker of ESPN.com which team he is looking forward to playing the most and his answer should make Vols fans smile from Memphis to Knoxville and everywhere in between.

“I’m ready to play Alabama and hopefully show them the mistake that they made in not getting me.”

The 6-2, 190-pound gunslinger burst onto the recruiting scene following a junior campaign in which he threw for more than 3,300 yards and 53 touchdowns. He committed to Tennessee last June and remained committed when Butch Jones was hired to replace Derek Dooley.

Ferguson may not be the starter when Tennessee plays Austin Peay Aug. 31, but I love everything that I’ve heard from him to this point.

I think it’s only a matter of time before he gets the starting job, and maybe he’ll even get that chance to beat Alabama on Oct. 26.

Follow me on Twitter @PatrickASchmidt

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

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