PISCATAWAY – Kyle Flood made it clear this week that he’d like one quarterback. He said that’s what’s best for a football team, so he’d like to commit to one guy.
While he also said that guy may not emerge until seven to 10 days before the season opener, the first major test for Gary Nova and Chas Dodd was today at Rutgers first intrasquad scrimmage.
The sixth spring practice marked the first real measuring stick of where the competition is, and while it remains either guy’s job, Dodd appeared to have the edge.
The two split reps with the first team offense, with both looking like it was the first scrimmage of the spring. On a day that included situational football like redzone and two minute offense, Dodd went 14 of 37 for 180 yards and two touchdowns and an interception while Nova went 10 of 26 for 118 yards and two interceptions.
“I thought both guys had some good moments and maybe some moments they’d like to have back today,” Flood said. “It’s hard in this type of setting to get into a great rhythm.”
Between things like stoppages in play, focusing more on situational football than a free flowing game, not talking to offensive coaches on the sideline like you would in a game and coaches on the field instead of up in the coaches' box makes it not exactly a game-like setting.
“I think two weeks from now we’ll have a better feel because it will be more like a game,” Flood said.
Whether it felt like a game or not, Nova was clearly disappointed in himself about his play. In particular the two interceptions.
“Bad plays, bad decisions,” Nova said of the interceptions, later adding “It’s always not as bad on film when you watch it…Right now the feeling is not very good,” when talking about his overall play.
While the 6-foot-2, 230-pound rising sophmore was critical of his play, his head coach wasn’t so harsh.
“One of them should have been a sack so I think it was more frustration and the other one I think we've got to sit down on offense and look at it on film,” Flood said. “Was it the throw? Was it the route? Those are the things you don’t know when you’re down on the field.”
While Dodd may have had a better day than Nova, his level of play wasn’t where he would have wanted it to be.
“It wasn’t as good as we wanted it to be as for as offensive production wise and what we were able to do,” Dodd said. “…Again this is the first scrimmage.”
But was that first scrimmage enough to separate himself in any way in the quarterback competition?
“I hope so,” Dodd said. “I felt like we both came out here, we both made mistakes, we both did some good things.”