Spring Game Sights: Could Syracuse’s QB Race Come Down to Hunt vs. Allen?

Terrel Hunt took big steps Saturday to become the early front-runner under center.

It’s a season of change for Syracuse football. Scott Shafer takes over as head coach, SU moves from the Big East to the ACC, and yesterday’s Spring Game underscored the ever-changing race at quarterback.

Right now the three main combatants are Charley Loeb (Ryan Nassib’s backup the last three years), Terrel Hunt, and John Kinder. The Orange also has Oklahoma transfer Drew Allen coming in. He’ll graduate from OU in May and do his graduate work on the Hill.

In terms of change, the offense will have to get used to the new faces. George McDonald is in as a first-time coordinator, and SU’s two top receivers, Alec Lemon and Marcus Sales, are gone. Enter Jarrod West. In the Spring Game, West caught six passes for 82 yards and two touchdowns. Both of his scores came from Hunt on 49 and 15 yard passes.

Hunt helped lead the White team (starters) over the Blue team (reserves) 27-10. Shafer reiterated no decisions have been made at the QB position yet. There’s all summer to pick a starter. But Hunt’s performance opened some eyes, completing 19 passes for over 200 yards. It appears Loeb and Kinder have fallen behind. Loeb didn’t enter the game until the fourth series, and only threw 8 passes for 9 yards. He also threw the ball away twice to avoid blitzes.

Could it be shaping up as Hunt vs. Allen in August?

Although West isn’t focused on who the quarterback is, he developed a rapport with Hunt.

“I’m not really worried about the quarterbacks. No matter who the quarterback is, as long as they put it in the area.”

Few figured Hunt would be the guy to beat, but he’s not taking anything for granted in this race.

“I’m not counting anybody out. If I’m the frontrunner now, I want to continue doing that… I think I did very well this spring. I learned a lot, picked up a lot.

Hunt knows what a go-to receiver like West can mean to a quarterback. It’s someone who can help take the pressure off the signal caller.

“Jarrod’s a great receiver. If I can just throw it to him and he’ll go get it, that’s what I like.”

Hunt used the entire field to connect with West, going over the middle, and throwing sideline passes to the outside. Hunt’s performance stood out and this coaching staff won’t make a decision based on anything but who gets the job done. For Loeb, this starts a summer where he needs to close the gap. For Hunt, maybe we have our first lead in SU’s quarterback race.

Posted: Austin Pollack

12 Comments on this Post

  1. If Hunt can continue to make the basic passes he will take the top spot. Hunt,we know can make plays with his legs. Drew,not so much. If Scott wants that ability he goes Hunting.Drew may give the offense more of a passing threat so it depends on Shafer’s preference. I prefer the quarter back who can deliver the ball downfield and spreads the offense.We have running backs to get the ground yardage.

  2. How many catches did Funderburk have? I haven’t seen any write ups about him catching anything. Did he play in spring game? Curios!

  3. Cuse Don't Luse

    I hate to be that guy who sucks the fun out of a debate but Allen will win the spot. We didn’t bring Paulus in to sit on the bench and we watched him prove he has been out of the sport for 4 years. Nassib was supposed to start that year and he didn’t and now he is a top tier draft prospect while Paulus is back coaching basketball. I guess the point I’m trying to make is that Allen sat on the bench at Oklahoma and didn’t come to SU to sit on the bench. Hunt has already proven to be a better option than Loeb and Kinder so they are out of my thought process but I just hope this doesn’t provoke a Terrel Hunt transfer, because in 2014 he will be our starter

  4. Russell MacEachern

    If DA don’t show up till August like he’s said I don’t see how he could do anything more than be a unwelcome (to the players)disruption of a seemingly smooth moving Offense w/a seasoned Hunt with 3yrs head start!!Either he comes early enough or slowly tries to work his way into the lineup if needed!Hunts seems to move the chains and understands the WRs quirks and strengths!!The starting QB has to have the teams confidence and blessing to be effective!

  5. Drew allen really mentioned that he wanted to come in during August? He must have really gotten a promise that he would start at that point. If it were a true competition, he would work out with his offense over the summer in order to build chemistry. If he does indeed come in right before camp and gets the majority of first team reps, then that may be a blow to the locker room dynamic. We don’t need that.

  6. Like Frank I’m concerned about Funderburk. Is he hurt or in the doghouse. Please dougie’s experiment with Paulus was embarrassing. Paulus threw wounded ducks all game long. Ryan’s should of played. dougie freaked and had Paulus show up. I’m guessing that Allen is a DIV 1 QB while Paulus is/was below that. Enough already!!

  7. @Terry; I agree with you on the Paulis experiment. It was embarrassing.

    @Frank; Funderburk was on the “white team” and didn’t have one ball thrown to him at all. I think Terrel Hunt was locked onto Jarrod West as his go to guy during the contest and didn’t recognize him as one of the recievers. I surprised to see George Morris III set up as a reciever out of the slot position. I want to ask everyone that was there,where was Ashton Broyld? I can’t remember seeing him in the game either.

    Another reason he didn’t have a ball thrown to him could be due to the fact that none of the three qb’s could get the ball down field. As good as Hunt looked during the game he would have been sacked by the opposing defenses multiple times. I hate making this statement but the starting QB is Drew Allens to lose. With both Wilson and Kimble coming in and redshirting in 2014, Terrel Hunt should get the starting job at QB and the fire works then begins in 2015 when Wilson,Kimble and AJ Long compete for the job.

  8. Really wish more people came out to see the game. My kids and I had a great time!

    I thought the Hunt-West connection was great. Wish I could have seen some balls thrown to Funderburk.

    Really excited to see the Hunt-Allen race for QB1. Seems like Loeb and Kinder are out of it right now.. atleast that was the way it looked.

    On a side note. George Morris looked good, we are so fortunate to have so many good RBs. He is also my 3 year old sons favorite player because he high fived him after the game!

  9. Duany Duany

    @Ron

    Broyld has an injury, he’s out for Spring ball, happened a couple of weeks ago.

  10. @Duany Duany; I hadn’t heard that,thanks for sharing that information with the rest of us.

  11. Informative article, totally what I wanted to find.

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