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George Orwell and the Temple Quarterbacks: An Exercise in Doublespeak?

Sep 21, 2011, 3:20 PM EDT

Revisiting Temple head coach Steve Addazio's preseason comments rejecting a two quarterback system in light of his recent decision to play both Mike Gerardi and Chester Stewart.

If you’ve been keeping up with our Temple coverage since Steve Addazio
was introduced as head coach earlier this year, you’ll know we’ve been
pretty high on the guy to this point. He’s fiery. He’s motivated. He’s
TUFF.

But just just three weeks into first campaign
as head coach, Addazio already seems like a different guy than he was at
the end of August. The same coach who seemed so direct and straight
forward has become more and more evasive when it comes to the ongoing
question of a starting quarterback.

We should state,
if you haven’t already heard, that senior

QB Chester Stewart has been announced as the starter for
Temple’s game this weekend in College Park against the Maryland
Terrapins. In and of itself, playing Stewart isn’t necessarily the
problem—but the way Addazio arrived at his decision, that’s the
issue.

Three

weeks ago during his team’s preseason Media Day, when the coach still
hadn’t announced a starter under center, Addazio made the following
comments as related to the future of his
quarterbacks.

–”We’re looking for that ‘it factor’ more
than that extra completed pass. It’s that ability to lead the team down
the field. You know, this guy threw three for six, ‘great, that’s
terrific,’ but could he overcome adversity to lead the team? That’s the
factor sometimes that is hard to find. And, you know what, you might not
find it until week three to be honest with you…That ‘it factor,’ that
leadership, that ability to drive a team, sustain a team, it’s critical
right now. And you do the best you can to do a great job predicting
that. We could go into game one, one quarterback may start that game, he
may struggle, we put another guy in, that guy leads the team and, you
know what, there we go. That’s what you got. That’s the guy that’s
probably going to go from that point forward, until proven
otherwise.”

underline;”>exactly 3 for 6 and failed in repeated to
attempts to “sustain the team.” With the exception of his first drive in
which Temple scored its final points of the game, a second quarter
field goal to go up 10-7, the only “it factor” displayed by Stewart in week three was
the clear fact that he wasn’t getting “it” done.

And
after all, isn’t that why the coach re-inserted Mike Gerardi under
center after pulling him just a quarter prior?

Once
Gerardi was back in the ballgame, Temple did its best to break the Penn
State pass rush by attempting to throw the ball over the eight to nine
guys stacked in the box. But Gerardi, who sat on the sidelines late in
the second quarter and throughout almost all of the third, had lost his
rhythm and feel for the game. The fourth quarter featured one turnover
after another and the Owls were ultimately burnt by continuously handing
PSU nothing less than stellar field position.

Not
only did it look like Addazio was playing two quarterbacks—a strategy he
previously labeled “unproductive”—but also that his “good problem had
turned into a bad one” because he couldn’t make a decision as to which
quarterback he wanted.

Now, he’s claiming that even
though Chester Stewart will start against the Terps, that “that doesn’t
mean Gerardi won’t play.”

If you’re a fan of
football, then you know there’s a really easy out for the coach on this
one. That easy out is to claim that each guy has a different skill set
and that it’s not a two quarterback offense if one QB is running the
spread and the other QB is running a more traditional passing plan. So,
naturally, that’s exactly what Addazio said when asked about it,
right?

Okay,
not exactly. So if Mike Gerardi can run the spread just as well as
Chester Stewart, and both guys are very similar in their capabilities,
and Addazio isn’t running a two quarterback system, and isn’t doing all
the things he said wouldn’t, even though his indecision did hurt the
team
last week, then why is Chester Stewart starting against Maryland this
weekend?

“War is Slavery.
Ignorance isn’t running a two
quarterback system…but Chester Stewart and Mike Gerardi will play this
weekend.