No, Alabama, you’re not alone. Penn State faces a similar quarterback battle that’s now in its second year. Here’s what I wrote about the situation in today’s print edition (with a corrected third paragraph):
TUSCALOOSA — The weather for State College, Pa., on Saturday afternoon calls for room temperatures and maybe a few showers.
That’s far from the muggy conditions Alabama used to its advantage a year ago when Penn State visited the Deep South.
Don’t expect such easy sledding when Alabama travels to Big Ten country for the first time in 22 years Saturday, Tide coach Nick Saban said. But like Alabama, the Nittany Lions are still sorting out a quarterback competition entering game week.
“Penn State is a very, very good team, a much different team than we played a year ago,” Saban said. “They seem like they play faster. I think the circumstances down here — it was real hot — probably affected them a little bit. They have more experience. The quarterbacks are playing better, which is probably the biggest key offensively.”
The Nittany Lions used two players under center in Saturday’s opener.
That continued a competition that dates back to last season. Rob Bolden, who started Penn State’s 24-3 loss in Tuscaloosa last September, was the first on the field for the Lions in their 41-7 win over Indiana State of the Football Championship Subdivision on Saturday. He completed 6 of 12 passes for 37 yards, while fellow quarterback Matt McGloin came off the bench to connect on 6 of 8 attempts for 77 yards for the run-heavy offense.
The mystery surrounding Alabama’s own quarterback competition remains, though Saban said a resolution was possible by the end of this week.
“We’re not going to name a starting quarterback today,” Saban said. “Later in the week as we see how the two guys practice, we’ll make a determination as to which guy will give us the best opportunity in this particular game or if there’s some kind of combination of the two that would be helpful and useful to us we’ll look at the option of doing that.”
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The topic was also addressed extensively by newspapers up in Pennsylvania. Here’s a sampling of what they wrote.
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