Auburn freshman quarterback Jonathan Wallace showed a great deal of promise during the game against LSU on Saturday, September 22. As reported by Charles Goldberg at AL.com, teammates were impressed with Wallace even before he took to the field for three plays against LSU.
When asked in an interview about Wallace, offensive lineman Chad Slade stated, "He comes here every day, he works hard, he does everything the coach tells him to do no matter what, he has no mouth, no complaints about anything. He stays up here until 10 o'clock at night watching film I believe in him 110 percent."
Auburn head coach Gene Chizik removed Wallace's red shirt during last Saturday's game and gave the freshman quarterback the opportunity to prove his mettle against one of the SEC's top-ranked defenses. Although this was Wallace's first real-world experience at the college level, his performance indicated that he has what it takes to succeed.
Jonathan Wallace filled a wildcat role for three plays during the game and produced a net total of 15 rushing yards. This may not sound like a great deal of output. Those gains, however, achieved during just three plays, represented approximately 17 percent of Auburn's total rushing yardage against LSU.
Wallace was only on the field for 10 percent of the total rushing plays carried out during the game, so creating 17 percent of the total rushing yardage would seem to indicate that the freshman will bring a great deal of efficiency to the wildcat role if nothing else.
I understand that it's impossible to paint a clear picture with only three plays, especially when attempting to carry out meaningful analysis, but Wallace's performance still seems to suggest that he deserves more time on the field. Auburn continues to list Clint Moseley as their No. 2 quarterback, but unless Moseley makes rapid progress with his shoulder injury, I predict that Wallace will effectively have to be called the backup quarterback.
Perhaps Jonathan Wallace's inclusion in the overall offensive strategy is exactly what Auburn needs in order to breathe more life into the program. I still believe Kiehl Frazier can become a great quarterback and prove that he's in the right place, but I admit that he has to learn to calm down and make faster decisions in the face of a penetrated line.
In the meantime, I believe sending Jonathan Wallace into the mix periodically could improve the team's average offensive yardage and give Gene Chizik and offensive coordinator Scott Loeffler at least some of the magic they've been missing so far this season.
Christopher Brown is an avid, almost rabid college football fan. More importantly, he is a fan of the Auburn Tigers, a team that always seems to provide its fans with an unpredictable and even frustrating roller-coaster ride.
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