Edelman, Magazu play the QB shuffle

Thomas Gallick

Senior will sit for two series as younger passers develop for future starts and gain experience

The way Kent State football coach Doug Martin sees it, if using multiple players at other positions works, using two quarterbacks in a game should work too.

“You know, you do it at every other position on the field,” Martin said. “Two running backs always play (and) two tight ends play, and it rewards guys that are working really hard.”

The Flashes introduced their two-quarterback system in the season opener against Boston College, with senior Julian Edelman starting and junior Anthony Magazu coming in for the third series of each half.

Edelman went 10-of-14 for 123 yards and two interceptions in the game, while Magazu went 3-of-6 for 11 yards in his two series.

Edelman said he wishes he could play every down because of his competitive nature, but he understands Martin’s reasons for playing Magazu.

“(Coming out of the game) helped, I guess,” Edelman said. “I’d rather be in there to play, but it’s coach’s decision. I trust him.”

Edelman said he and Magazu shared notes during the Boston College game on the sidelines.

Under Martin’s system, Edelman is the unquestioned starter, while Magazu and sophomore Giorgio Morgan compete during the week in practice to determine who gets playing time on Saturday.

Martin said he compares the quarterback situation to the Flashes’ running back situation. Barring injury, junior running back Eugene Jarvis will have the most carries by far, but sophomore Andre Flowers and freshman Jacquise Terry will also play.

The Game

KENT STATE (0-1) vs. IOWA STATE (1-0)

Where: Jack Trice Stadium (Ames Iowa)

When: 7 p.m. tomorrow

Radio: WNIR 100.1 FM (Tom Linder)

Going into camp, Martin said Morgan would be Edelman’s backup and would play every game. But Martin said Magazu played so well in practice that he passed Morgan on the depth chart, at least for the first game.

“We had a really good competition going with Anthony and Giorgio, and Anthony had turned the ball over fewer times in practice,” Martin said. “Those guys will continue to compete.”

Martin has yet to announce who will come in for Edelman tomorrow, when the Flashes play at Iowa State at 7 p.m.

Magazu said the competition with Morgan has made camp a lot more interesting for the backup quarterbacks.

“It makes us come out here and compete every day in practice,” Magazu said. “Sometimes practice gets a little lethargic when you’re just coming out here by yourself. Me and Giorgio know we need to compete every day for a job if we want to play.”

Morgan went 23-of-36 passing in two games last year, while Magazu went 13-of-27 in three games. Edelman had seven passing touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns before breaking his arm.

Martin said Edelman is mature enough to handle coming out of the game, adding that he does not put much stock in quarterbacks finding a rhythm.

“(Quarterback rhythm is) way overrated anyway,” Martin said. “Actually, when he went back into the Boston College game (Edelman) played better.”

Martin said playing two quarterbacks is a growing trend in college football.

“There’s a lot of it going on because so many people are playing with mobile quarterbacks now, and those guys tend to get nicked up and hurt occasionally,” Martin said. “You have to have another guy ready to play.”

Beyond the competition on the field, Magazu said all of the quarterbacks get along well out of practice.

“We keep everything on the field,” Magazu said. “Off the field, we’re good friends. We don’t even worry about (competing for playing time). We don’t even talk about it.”

Contact sports reporter Thomas Gallick at [email protected].