Mario Cristobal: 'No value' in naming starting QB ahead of season opener

Dylan Mickanen
·2 min read

Mario Cristobal: 'No value' in naming starting QB ahead of season opener originally appeared on NBC Sports Northwest

Many Pac-12 schools such as Oregon State and Washington State named its starting quarterback over the weekend heading into the last week of practice before beginning the 2020 season.

Meanwhile, Oregon has been hesitant to publicly declare a starter and from the sounds of it, they will not do so ahead of its season opener against Stanford on November 7th. 

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"When you’re playing Game 1, opening game of the season, there’s no value to a team giving up every detail of what they’re doing," head coach Mario Cristobal told the media Monday afternoon.

"Respectfully, just decline to give out information on who’s starting at certain positions because we’d rather let the opponent figure that out, quite honestly. Some of that stuff you know already who’s playing or who’s serving in a backup role or reserve role but that’s going to be our philosophy with that up until Game 1."

As for who has been taking the majority of reps with the ones, Cristobal said “We’re continuing to split them up like we have been."

Still, it appears like this is Tyler Shough's job to lose. Throughout camp, Oregon coaches have said he has ran with the ones primarily, with graduate transfer Anthony Brown running with the twos. Just last week, Cristobal said Shough had been running with the ones, weeks into training camp.

This is Shough's third year in the program and had Herbert not returned for his senior season, Shough would have started as a redshirt freshman last season. If Shough isn't the starter, it would shock nearly everyone who has paid attention to the Ducks training camp.

But, leaving any amount of doubt forces Stanford to prepare for Anthony Brown as well, to an extent. Given the truncated training camp, Oregon installing a new offense, and having to prepare for two quarterbacks, that's a lot of varying film Stanford will have to watch to prepare for Saturday's game in a short amount of time: Boston College film for Brown, Oregon film for Shough, Penn State and Mississippi State film for Moorhead's offense. 

As irritating as it is for Ducks fans to see Oregon refuse to name a starter, it is the correct call for trying to gain any advantage you can on Saturday, so it's hard to fault them for it. 

We'll likely get to learn for sure who is starting when either Tyler Shough or Anthony Brown first take the field against Stanford on Saturday, November 7th at 4:30 p.m. PT at Autzen Stadium.