As double-sessions commenced for the Syracuse football team in sweltering heat outside Manley Field House, The Fizz was on hand for eyewitness accounts.
Fortunately enough, the shortened time for media access was enough to be a dead giveaway that Greg Paulus would be the starting quarterback.
The offense worked initially with short passes to the sidelines and screens against no defense. Eventually, the defense was brought over for about ten minutes to work 11-on-11 and Paulus took all the first team snaps.
The entire time, Offensive Coordinator Rob Spence was in his ear yelling plays, encouragement and of course, criticism.
But this all makes sense if you pay attention to what Marrone has said he wanted to see in his starting quarterback.
If Marrone is looking for someone with poise in the pocket, a natural leadership ability and an accurate arm (albeit not the strongest one), then check, check and check. Paulus is clearly the leader in two of those categories and based of what we’ve seen in practice, a strong candidate for the third one.
Paulus best throw of the day was an out-route to Mike Williams about fifteen yards downfield which was thrown well ahead of the cut, but Williams turned and the ball was there for him right on target.
Ryan Nassib does deserve credit for the best throw of the day: a lob to the corner of the endzone for Williams, which was caught one-handed while Williams stiff-armed the cornerback over his left shoulder.
Paulus just makes sense.
This is a team that’s been in disarray for the last four years and needs someone with the same rigid values of the head coach to lead them on the field.
As for Nassib, the job is now to work even harder and steal PT from Paulus.