There’s always a certain infatuation with the backup quarterback.
This isn’t exclusive to Ohio State, of course, as it is just the college football world we live in. Fans are often enamored with the unknown and want to see something they haven’t before. The first incompletion or interception that gets thrown by the starter and the cries for the backup become louder.
J.T. Barrett is the Buckeyes’ starting quarterback. Ohio State head coach Urban Meyer stated that numerous times the last few months and quarterbacks coach Ryan Day once again reaffirmed it Wednesday afternoon.
The more intriguing debate in Columbus, though, is who will be Barrett’s backup: redshirt sophomore Joe Burrow, redshirt freshman Dwayne Haskins or true freshman Tate Martell?
Right now, it appears to be a two-horse race at the conclusion of spring practice between Burrow and Haskins. And following Saturday’s spring game, Meyer wasn’t ready to name a No. 2.
"I know it is very close," Meyer said, "but I'm not prepared to say who is 2, who is 3 yet."
So, how will Meyer, Day and new offensive coordinator Kevin Wilson come to the conclusion of who Ohio State’s backup quarterback will be? Day was asked Wednesday about the plan.
“It’s not just one thing. I know you’d like me to say one thing but it isn’t,” he said. “At the end of the day, are you moving the team down the field to score touchdowns? If you’re doing that, if you’re a leader, then you’re doing your job.”
“Guys do things different ways. Every quarterback has their own way of doing it so it isn’t just one thing. It’s kind of a combination of a lot of things.”
The backup quarterback has seen plenty of action under Meyer at Ohio State so this battle is rather important. However, it doesn't appear anything will be decided until fall camp.
“You’re seeing two guys behind J.T. that are really building and growing as quarterbacks,” Day said. “They’re both still young but they’re getting better every practice. We talk about it all the time: Are they game ready? That’s the goal is that when we get to August and are those guys game ready to get in there and play?”