Everyone will know who the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga football team's starting quarterback is next Saturday, coach Russ Huesman said, when the Mocs' offense takes the field for the first time against South Florida.
Before the Mocs make their way to Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Fla., the battle between redshirt sophomore Terrell Robinson and Huesman's son Jacob, a redshirt freshman, will continue.
"Everybody will know who the starter is when the first snap occurs," UTC's fourth-year coach said Friday morning, before giving his team the day off.
Robinson was co-freshman of the year in the Southern Conference last season while filling in for an injured B.J. Coleman. The former South Pittsburg star entered spring practice and the preseason at No. 1 on the depth chart, with Jacob Huesman, a former Baylor star, right on his heels.
The two dual-threat quarterbacks have split repetitions with the first- and second-team offenses throughout the preseason, including during the scrimmages.
"I say there's still a battle," Coach Huesman said. "We haven't decided on a quarterback yet. We're still battling - that's every day. We'll make the decision [next] Saturday morning who the starter's going to be."
It's not just the media or avid UTC supporters asking if a starter has been named. The coach said he hears it at home.
"Every single day - I put the kids to bed and I get, 'Who's starting at quarterback?'" he said.
Picking a starter hasn't been made any easier during the three-plus weeks of practice. Both players are ideally suited for UTC's new spread offense and both have performed very well, Coach Huesman said.
"They've both had great camps," he said, adding that he and offensive coordinator Marcus Satterfield discuss the QB race nearly every day. The head coach added that Satterfield is doing "a great job with both of those kids and making them better passers."
UTC made it clear in the spring that both quarterbacks were going to play regularly, regardless of who started each game. That might have eased any tension between them, Coach Huesman said.
If there are 70 offensive snaps in a game, the ratio could be 40-30 or 50-20.
"I think the reason those two feel good is because they know that no matter what happens, there's a role for each of them," Coach Huesman said. "I don't know how it's going to play out week to week ... but I think it's a unique quarterback situation."
The coach surprised the team Friday by giving the Mocs the day off and sending them over to the Aquatic and Recreation Center to "just go down the slides and have fun." ... The Mocs will practice at 8 a.m. today and Sunday before taking Monday off, as they will each week during the season.