With just 10 days left until the Ducks’ season opener, it is expected that Head Coach, Mark Helfrich, will soon announce who the starting quarterback will be. That announcement could very likely come tomorrow.
After what was said to be a tight battle between graduate transfer, Dakota Prukop and redshirt freshman, Travis Jonsen, it appears Prukop, who is regarded as the “most consistent” thus far, will be given the nod.
Though Jonsen has been impressive and many Ducks fans feel he should be given the keys (given he’ll be with the program for a couple of years}, it’s likely Oregon coaches feel Prukop’s in-game experience, maturity, and overall leadership give the Ducks the best chance to win at this point.
That being said, Jonsen will more than likely get his fair share of playing time in a back up role. Unfortunately, It’s hard to think of the last time a starting Oregon quarterback didn’t at least miss some playing time due to injury.
So with game one just around the corner, what can fans expect to see from Oregon’s expected starter?
“Basically, I”m going to do what the team needs,” Prukop said yesterday.
“If teams are going to load the box, I’m going to throw the ball. If teams are going to spread out, I”m going to run the zone read. . . My mission as a quarterback is to play point guard.”
Playing point guard may in fact be the best thing for Prukop to do. With so many talented play-makers on offense this year, Prukop likely won’t have to carry the team on his back, much like Mariota did at times in years past. Of course, the Ducks will need Prukop to make plays, especially with his legs, but overall, if he can play smart and get the ball to the talent around him, things should go well this season.
Easier said than done.
Although Prukop arrived in Oregon with solid game time experience, he still had to get familiar with Oregon’s system and of course, it’s tempo. That adjustment took some time.
As Prukop put it yesterday, he made more than one mistake in each series at the beginning of the Spring but as things have progressed, those mistakes have become less and less frequent.
With just a little over a week before his first actual game as a Duck, Prukop feels he has the system down “100 percent.”
“Now, It’s just a matter of repetition,” Prukop said. “I feel comfortable and happy with where I am.”
As he looks ahead to game one, there’s a lot to be excited about but what is Prukop most looking forward to? Simply preparing for another opponent other than Oregon’s own defense.
“People are ready to hit other people than their teammates,” Prukop said with a smile.
Here’s hoping fans continue to see that smile. . .after every 4th quarter of course.