Quarterback, the most important position in all of American sports.
We love him, hate him, love to hate him and every emotion in between.
He’s the field general, the one calling the plays and calling the shots, either leading his team down field for a score or turning the ball over to the opponent. He can be a great or a goat depending on the game; unfairly or not the QB gets all the praise and all the disappointment thrust onto his shoulders.
For the Colorado State Rams, finding a quarterback with some consistency is a major key.
Last season, sophomore Garrett Grayson started five games to begin the season. He played well considering they were only starts 4-8 of his young career, compiling 946 yards and seven touchdowns passing and a TD on the ground. But when Grayson suffered a broken collarbone in Week Five, senior M.J. McPeek came in and played his first football at quarterback in five years. McPeek played valiantly in three losses, but gave way to redshirt freshman Conner Smith after injuring his non-throwing shoulder. Smith started the last six games of the season for CSU, winning three contests and making head coach Jim McElwain‘s decision on a starter tough.
But making it even more difficult is incoming freshman Nick Stevens, who McElwain gushed about during National Signing Day.
“I’m really excited from a skill standpoint on our quarterback,” explained McElwain. “I just can’t say enough about a guy who’s about 27-1 as a starter at a high level of football in California. He’s a guy that brings in over a four-point GPA – I don’t know how that’s possible, because the last time I checked it was on a four-point scale, so I thought he was foraging it. Here’s a guy that comes in and really, is a true leader. Fended off multiple, multiple offers after he committed to us, and that just tells you the type of character that this young man has. I’m really excited to get him into our program.”
Stevens is a 6’4” 190-pound pro-style quarterback, and multiple-sport star. Playing basketball is a love of his, and Stevens elected to stay and finish the basketball season before coming to Colorado State in the summer. It’s evidence of his athleticism, but it will also put him behind Grayson and Smith in terms of practice time.
Still, if last year was any indication, all quarterbacks need to be ready to enter a game at any given time. Injuries are a way of life in college football, and we may see Stevens earlier than expected.
The Rams kick off Spring Practice on Tuesday, with McElwain meeting with the media Monday to discuss not only the brewing quarterback battle, but other exciting developments as well.