For most die-hard Ducks fans, Spring Camp can feel a bit like a giant teaser. After all, the actual football season is several months away and per usual, practices are closed to the public and media.
All that’s left to do is ask five thousand questions of any coach or player to get a sense of who or what may be developing or standing out- especially in another season full of questions at the quarterback position.
As was the case last year, most eyes are on Junior Transfer, Dakota Prukop, who arrived this Winter from Montana State University, hoping to play his final year of eligibility on a much bigger stage. Sound familiar?
Despite the controversy of bringing in junior college transfers for just one year, the decision seemed to work well last year with Vernon Adams Jr.
But will it work well again?
Time will tell, but one thing really seemed to help Adams Jr. as he came to Oregon with only 3 weeks to develop with the team before game 1.
From day one, it seemed Adams Jr. had come in and gained almost instant rapport with the team. His undeniable talent and charismatic personality likely helped build that immediate chemistry.
With that in mind, as Oregon Football enters a similar scenario this season, many wonder if Prukop has been able to, at least somewhat, fill the big shoes that came before him.
So far, Prukop has faced the cameras at least a couple of times and reading between the lines, a few things do stand out. He is confident and has a commanding presence. He also seems to be coachable and eager to learn- stating that the quarterback battle serves to make all of them better. It seems he is saying all the right things.
This week, Offensive Coordinator, Matt Lubick, discussed Prukop and the other contending quarterbacks and how things were developing chemistry wise.
“Love their attitude,” Lubick said. “They are doing a whole bunch of things on their own to be successful and as coaches, that’s all we can ask.”
Though it seems Prukop is the current front-runner, current freshman quarterback, Travis Jonsen, who was rehabing an injury all last season, is also emerging as a possible contender for the starting job.
“He’s a lot better for a whole lot of reasons,” Lubick said. ” He’s done a ton of stuff on his own, building route chemistry.”
There’s that chemistry word again. But just how important is it? If you ask Lubick, it’s a little overrated.
“[Dakota] and the other new quarterbacks, they’ve all been embraced by the rest of the team. It’s the same thing that happened with Vernon last year, Lubick told reporters this week.”
“Our team wants to win and who’s ever back there, it doesn’t matter. We’re gonna try to win and so sometimes that chemistry deal is a bit overrated.”
Lubick went on to explain that what’s more important for the quarterbacks is to just understand the offense and the timing of the throws. “And that’s just going to keep getting better,” he said.
“I’ve been really proud of our team…whoever’s out there, whether it’s Jeff, whether it’s Vernon, whether it’s Dakota, whether it’s Travis, or whether it’s Terry, we want to win,” Lubick added.
“We’re gonna play the guy that gives us the best chance to win at the end of the day and everyone else knows that.”
How important do you think QB chemistry is? Let us know.
Follow Nichole Brown on Twitter @UOgridirongirl