We all knew this day would eventually come. I’m talking of course about the post-Trace McSorley era. After three years as a starter, leading to one of PSU’s most successful stretches in recent memory and several broken school records, James Franklin finds himself tasked with finding a quality replacement who can not only sling the rock, but also be able to make opposing defenders pay with their feet.
This is the first of BSD’s annual position previews leading up to the Blue-White Game, as today, we take a look at the quarterback spot.
The Annointed One(s)
Tommy Stevens was confirmed the starter by James Franklin at a press conference during the second signing day period. You all know his story by now: Fifth-year senior who could have easily transferred last offseason and been immediately eligible to play two more years elsewhere. Instead, he made the decision to stick it out and be included in the famed “Lion” package as a jack-of-all trades type, rushing for a pair of touchdowns and also throwing for another touchdown.
Tommy has shown flashes of brilliance in his limited action at QB, but whether he can be consistently good remains to be seen. Currently, he is limited this spring recovering from surgery for an undisclosed foot injury that sidelined him for the Citrus Bowl. This isn’t the first time he has dealt with foot issues, and it’s a big enough cause for concern that it would be of little surprise to see Sean Clifford take the reins as the starter at some point to spell for an injured Stevens.
Speaking of Mr. Clifford, we are sure to see plenty of action from him at the Blue-White Game, which will give him a chance to once again, showcase his arm but in a little more extended action. We saw glimpses of his talents last season (most notably his arm strength), and it will be interesting to see how he is not only able to throw the deep ball, but also how accurate he looks on the shorter stuff, as well as his mobility. It’s no secret that he doesn’t have Trace or Tommy’s leg speed, but the ability to at least be able to evade pressure and pick up some yardage on the ground will be key if he eventually does see important game action.
Will Levis, The Freshman Blue-Chippers, And Everybody Else
While Levis has yet to see any game action, he reportedly possesses a cannon of an arm, which he should have plenty of chances to put on display during the Blue-White Game. You should also expect to see former four-star and current early enrollees Taquan Roberson and Michael Johnson Jr. see some run, as well.
There is also a good chance we will see walk-ons Michael Shuster and Isaac Rumery show what they’re both made of. While neither quarterback should be expected to see the field in actual game action, they are nonetheless critical practice players who at times help emulate opposing players when preparing for a particular opponent.