The Orange has some big shoes to fill this spring in former quarterback Ryan Nassib, and it might take more than one player to fill them. Syracuse coach Scott Shafer said he is not opposed to playing more than one quarterback this fall.
Syracuse starts practices on Tuesday with a wide-open quarterback competition among Charley Loeb, a pro-style player who was Nassib’s backup in 2012, and dual-threat quarterbacks John Kinder and Terrel Hunt. Shafer, who was the Orange’s defensive coordinator for four seasons before he was promoted to head coach this year, said Kinder used to drive his defense nuts as the quarterback for the scout team offense. Loeb didn’t get many reps as Nassib’s backup, but he is a big, strong, intelligent quarterback, Shafer said.
There’s a chance Syracuse fans might get to see all three this fall.
“If that’s one player, great, if that’s two players, great,” Shafer said. “It’s whatever we have to do. In the perfect world we’d love to be a one-system quarterback as the starter, as compared to two or multiple guys playing it, but at the end of the day, we’ll be a win-system quarterback approach, where that position has to be able to win for us. No different than any other position on the team.
“I think we need to be ready to be creative at the quarterback position,” he said. “We want to try to develop each guy and try to find the guy that can do it all, but at the end of the day we have some talented kids that can line up behind the center and do different things. Whether it be a starting quarterback that’s strong at 70-80 percent of the things you want to do, and then you find another kid that can go in and run wildcat situations and maybe there’s a third kid listed at a different position who can go in and do those things. More than anything the goal is to have a win-system quarterback approach.”