ATLANTA -- The plan will be for Brice Ramsey, Faton Bauta and Greyson Lambert to split reps with the first team as evenly as possible when preseason camp opens next week.
That in itself is easier said than done.
Georgia head coach Mark Richt, at Monday night’s UGA Day at the College Football Hall of Fame, said too many variables are in play to divide the reps by a set number. By doing that, it would be difficult to evaluate each quarterback based on the various scenarios that could come into play.
“You can’t make it just exactly the same plays, the same script,” Richt said. “If you did, the second guy would know the plays of the first guy. But over time we think we will be able to make a decision.”
Unless one of the three candidates blows him away during camp, Richt will have a tough decision to make and one that has and will continue to be scrutinized. It’s also a conversation that's followed him everywhere this summer. When he goes out, he gets the question. His family is just as curious, with his nieces and nephews asking him who the Bulldogs will start at quarterback.
Based on the criteria Richt and offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer are looking for when it comes to this quarterback competition, it could take some time before a winner emerges.
“How are they in meetings? Do they take good notes? Can they recall what you just spoke about on the front end of the meeting as you leave before you walk out the door?” Richt said. “Are they truly locked in mentally? Can they take that knowledge and go to the field and not forget what you just talked about and can they handle that? Obviously, when we just warm up we watch them. When we take QB-center exchange we watch them. Cadence, voice inflexion, throwing and catching with running backs, receivers and tight ends. Throwing with DBs in coverage, (pass skeleton). Then all of a sudden you’re in there 11 on 11.
Richt continued, “With the first unit, everybody blocks everybody and a guy is wide open. Can you deliver? Not everybody blocks beautifully. Can you move around and find a little space and still stay focused down field to hit your target? Everybody is covered period, will you throw it up for grabs? Will you throw the ball away? There are so many things. You can learn more about a guy sometimes under duress.”
One thing Richt mentioned once he was on stage for the UGA Day interview with broadcaster Chuck Dowdle and the subsequent Q&A session with fans was that the official depth chart released earlier this summer should have read "Brice Ramsey or Faton Bauta" instead of listing them as first- and second-team players, respectively. Greyson Lambert, a transfer from Virginia who has entered the quarterback mix, wasn’t on the depth chart then.
Though Richt would probably prefer to name a starter before the end of preseason camp, there’s a chance the competition won’t end until after the season starts. That's not ideal but it's a scenario Richt is aware could happen.
“The reality is, at quarterback, until you get in that game and start playing, it’s different,” Richt said. “You can get all this stuff and a guy could win the job and get out there and struggle. The next guy might just go in and flourish. You just don’t know.”