It’s hardly surprising that we’re inside of two weeks before the Elon University football team’s season opener and we still don’t know who the starting quarterback will be.
Head coach Rich Skrosky has been adamant about not rushing into a decision dating back to spring practices. And that’s fine.
It’s just…well…we’d like to know.
No matter who Skrosky chooses — redshirt freshman Connor Christiansen or true freshman Daniel Thompson — that quarterback becomes the most vital part to any offensive success Elon has this year. He also becomes responsible for any stagnancy.
It’s no secret that Elon’s offense struggled last year. With Mike Quinn under center, the Phoenix averaged just 14.1 points and 295.2 yards per game. Both of those ranked in the bottom half of the Colonial Athletic Association (CAA).
Elon managed 20 points in only three games, and scored less than 10 three times.
The Phoenix could use a spark offensively. Christiansen or Thompson will have to provide it.
“The quarterback’s always the most important component, whether you’re the best team in America or the worst team in America,” Skrosky said. “I’ve said that from day one. That’s not hidden. The whole world knows that. They know that every day. Left guard misses a block, it’s the quarterback’s fault. That’s the expectation. And they have all that stuff. I don’t worry about any of their acumen or leadership. That stuff, they’re awesome, both those guys. They’re just young and they have to get a lot of experience.”
Skrosky has been high on both quarterbacks since they arrived on campus. Christiansen was a target of Skrosky’s when Skrosky was the offensive coordinator at Ball State University.
If it weren’t so clear that Elon was going to struggle last year, Christiansen probably would have seen some playing time. But deciding to redshirt him was beneficial, and he’s clearly shown in practice and scrimmages that he spent a year learning the system.
He orchestrated some fine drives in Elon’s most recent scrimmage, including a 16-play, 91-yard drive that ended in a touchdown. Christiansen completed 10 of 11 passes on that drive.
Thompson comes from a football family — his brother played at the University of South Carolina and in the NFL. It didn’t take him long to pick up Elon’s system when he enrolled early in February.
Skrosky said he has no timetable to make a decision. If he really wants to wait it out, the Phoenix doesn’t take the field until 7 p.m. Sept. 3 at Wake Forest University.
Whoever is under center on the first series against the Demon Deacons will be taking the first snap of his college career.
And boy, he’d better be ready to go.