Mar 312009
Authors: Matt L. Stephens

With the unexpected departure of redshirt freshman Alex Kelly yesterday from the CSU football team, the starting quarterback position this spring has suddenly become a two-horse race between Grant Stucker and Jon Eastman.

While it was expected that either Stucker or Eastman would be the player who ultimately received the nod for starting signal caller next fall, without Kelly in the mix the other quarterbacks will still have to adapt to practices differently.

“Well it’s kinda good and bad because from a quarterback’s standpoint, you get more reps in, you get to know the offense much better, which is especially good for Jon (Eastman),” Stucker said. “On the other side, you’re getting guys in there so much without rest, and that’s a big part of the game as well. I guess it’s more beneficial towards us to really get those reps in and get on the same page.”

But “getting on the same page” was something that the quarterbacks and wide receivers had a difficult time doing on Tuesday afternoon. Head coach Steve Fairchild said the entire offense looked awful.

“I didn’t see a running back on the field today that was worth a … Not one running back came to practice today, they were awful,” Fairchild said after practice. “If we had to play a game based on today’s practice I would have played five receivers, but the receivers were awful too, so maybe we’d just go goal line. The receivers looked like last spring where they were just good enough to get you beat, but the running backs were worse.”

As often is the case in many instances, Fairchild seemed to find something good in what looked to be a bad situation. While CSU was running their “third down” portion of practice cornerback Nick Oppenneer and wide receiver T.J. Borcky got in a brief scuffle following a play where the two were matched up in coverage.

“Well, actually I was happy to see it. It was the only emotion we had from anybody on offense during the whole practice. They just got in a little scuffle is all.”

Despite the winds howling over 20 mph, Fairchild said there are no excuses for the poor performance by the offense. The Rams will return to the practice field on Thursday with the hopes of having a more focused offense.

Sports writer Matt L. Stephens can be reached at

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