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I asked Randy Sanders today how he sees the QB battle potentially shaping up in the spring and into next season, whether they are close enough it would be a free-for-all or if it might be predicated on what type of offense the next staff installs. Here are his thoughts, which echoed some stuff Joker Phillips has also said recently:
"Unless they're in some kind of quarterback run game there is no question who the best one is," Sanders said. "There is a reason it took us eight games to pass up the passing yardage total that Max had, you know? There is a reason we went from averaging 320-something yards a game passing and 30-something points to where we are now.
"There is no question who the best one is. Unless the offense changes drastically I have a hard time believing he won't be the quarterback. Those other guys have gotten a lot of work and are going to be dramatically better in spring practice and next year than they would have been had (Smith) stayed healthy, but it's still not much of a question in my mind."
I think the bigger question is "Can Smith stay healthy for a full season"? He's been injured in both of the past 2 seasons and he isn't the most mobile of QBs out there.
Doesn't surprise me to hear him say that. I will point out, however, that Max was pretty awful last year. Why can't Towles take a similar step forward in the offseason? Throw in a a new staff/system and the inevitable uncertainty surrounding Smith's health (shoulder and ankle), it wouldn't surprise me if Towles takes a step past Smith and wins the starting job.
No disrespect intended to anyone on here but I dont give a fat rat's you know what about anything Randy Sanders says..He should have been let go a couple of years ago..I can see why UT canned him....And no I will not debate why I dislike him..This is my opinion..All are entitled to theirs...
I just want a new aggressive staff in here to get this thing turned around..
Miss St game...Ole Miss game.....Max Smith was not "awful". In fact he was very good for a true freshman those 2 games. He didn't look good against USC and LSU. But toward the end of the season, he was clearly the best we had last year.
He's obviously coached at a hight level in the SEC for longer than you and I combined....he also works directly with the QBs. You may not care what he says, or happy with the results on the field, but he clearly knows who the best QB in the program (right now) is.
We all saw the first 3 games and what M. Smith could do......
I agree completely! I think Sanders is a good QB coach, but a horrible coordinator in my opinion. I still do not understand scrapping your entire offense when Smith goes down. We totally neglected some of the home run threats that we brought in at WR and became a one dimensional team.
I will never understand bringing the entire team back to the level of the QB instead of bringing the QB up to the rest of the team.
I get that it's tough to be a true freshman QB in the SEC, but why not raise your expectations a little. The approach that Sanders has taken the last couple of years sure hasn't worked.
The man can only live on the "I coached Peyton Manning" and "I got Phillip Fulmer fired" mantras for so long.
I without question think that Coach Sanders knows what he is talking about. I thought that Max had the quickest release and best understanding of what is going on out there as well. But having 2 injuries in two years makes you wonder if he is ever going to lay in there and play 13 games in a season and put up some astronomical numbers. To be honest , I think that Whitlow looks better than Towles. Quicker release, and those legs are really really quick. Towles looked good on one series this year. Outside of that, he has looked terrible. I see him as a #3 next year, a good reason to red shirt and work on everything.
I agree with this completely. My rant had more to do with being ready for Sanders to be gone as a coordinator, not as a QB coach. I agree completely that Maxwell is completely ahead of the other two.
Okay - I'll play along with the theory that Smith is injury prone. As a coach, I would make him the starter....until he got hurt. (if it turns out that way).
You dont bench a guy b/c he may be injury prone.....you play him until an inury may occur. Especially if it benefits the team with him in the game...and with Smith, that's not in dispute.
That said, Smith's ankle injury was more about bad luck than him being injury prone. Im not sure anyone would have walked away from the way his ankle turned.......
This post was edited by Chiuk 17 months ago
Tenn canned him bcause he is no Offesive Q. He is a QB coach period. The same at UK he was a very good QB coach but a horrid OQ.
I hope he could stay around as the QB coach period.
Towels should have redshirted this yr but DADDY ranted and cried about him leaving lol. Now DADDy knows to shut up. Towels would be a fr next yr and be ready to take the helm when needed
Looking at the seasons worth of work, he wasn't good. And he shouldn't have been expected to be good. The point was, don't be surprised if Towles makes a similar move in the offseason. And don't be surprised if he emerges as the starting QB. He was an Elite 11 finalist for a reason.
If Smith is that much better why did it take all spring and fall to name him the starter.
That was one of the problems with joker, imo. To indecisive about the things like that. Name a wb so he can get reps and o-line can get reps and acclimated to the qb. Bantered back and forth all spring before naming starter. Not so much this year as years past.
Taking football advice from Sanders is like taking battlefield strategy from George Custer. Go quietly Sanders.
This post has been edited 2 times, most recently by Oldschoolcat 17 months ago
Everyone knew it was going to be Maxwell. He got all the first string snaps in Spring ball, and the majority of first string snaps in fall practice. Joker did the Brooks approach and not just hand him the job (not name him the starter). Ensures that he earns it.
Follow me on twitter @ TailgatingCzar
Smith did did lead UK in passing for the entire season last yr, in what little action he saw as a true frosh.
However, you're forgetting that Smith and Whitlow will also improve before next year. . Not just Towles.
Towles will be better nxt year than this past year.....but Smith and Whitlow will be too. Can Towles not only improve, but also improve enough to leap both Smith and Whitlow? Possibly, but based on what I've seen its not likely.
Towles should have redshirted. He and his dad will regret having his RS burned this year.
So you're saying Sanders' judgment is wrong about Smith being UKs best QB on the roster?
We're probably arguing in circles here, but just to extend it a little more; leading UK in passing last year is not saying an awful lot. UK was 114 out of 120 DI teams in passing offense last year. And I think you are discounting the fact that Smith is coming off a severe ankle injury, and recovering from a (throwing) shoulder injury (his second in as many seasons). How is that going to effect his offseason progress? I agree Towles should have redshirted, but I also think it gave him an idea (like it probably did for Smith in 2011) what kind of work he needs to put in over the offseason to take the next step. Towles has ALL the tools to be an elite SEC QB. I think if the competition gives him an inch he'll take it and move past them. JMO though.
I have left Whitlow out of the argument because I believe (hope?) the new coach will see the light and move him to a skill position like WR. Tee Martin, Tim Tebow, and Cam Newton are the last running QBs I can remember having real success against an SEC schedule. Guys like that come along once every 20 years, and I didn't see enough out of Whitlow this year to think he is cut from that kind of cloth. You win in the SEC with pro-style pocket passers.
No, I'm saying taking his assessment that Smith is the clear best QB for next year is a bit presumptuous, which is the title of the thread.
I'm saying it's none of his business. That decision belongs to the next staff.
Why does it matter? Sanders was asked a question and gave a response. The next coach will perform his own assessment, not rely on what Randy Sanders said in response to a single question in November 2012 before he was terminated.
Sanders knows more about playing QB than anyone at UK for a long time. Ask Woodson and Hartline, both were good prospects who became outstanding SEC QB's. Smith was as good or better than both and much earlier in his career. I don't know about Sanders' play calling sometimes but I also don't know how much Joker was involved. We all know this is about the Towles' contingent. Smith was on track to have a great year this year and he is an outstanding player who has proved it in competition. Towles isn't on the same page at this time and the real question is will he work hard enough to learn how to play the position. There has been a lot of talk about his attitude being less than great. Just throwing the ball is not enough at this level. Go back and look at the top QB prospects for the past years in recruiting databases and you will see the yield of great HS prospects being successful in college ball is very low. Sanders was asked a question and answered honestly. Frankly, he handled himself with a lot of class and took a lot of heat from Joker's ineptitude.
zcats said... "There has been a lot of talk about his attitude being less than great."
Perhaps the most inaccurate assessment of Towles I've ever seen printed.
Yeah that's why i said not so much this year. I don't know i guess I'm old school. Reps, Reps, Reps
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