Calling All Quarterbacks

Expected starter, quarterback Tony Pike.

One of the issues during the UConn game last weekend was the failure of the offense in changing the game plan to accommodate for Chazz Anderson playing during the second half. Head coach Brian Kelly will not let that happen to his team again. He'll have his entire squad of quarterbacks ready to go with packages to suite come Thursday night against South Florida.

On their team's short practice week, Kelly plans on giving all of his quarterbacks as many reps during practice as possible. Zach Collaros and Demetrius Jones both saw their number of reps increase to match those of the rest of the quarterbacks. Starter Tony Pike spent a day resting up the broken left arm he aggravated Saturday in Connecticut.

"We didn't do a lot with him (today)," said Kelly Tuesday. "We just wanted to get the arm to calm down a little bit. He knows our offense, and he knows what we need to do, so we'll take it easy with him and get him ready for Thursday."

That's not to say Kelly doesn't think his quarterback needs the practice.

"He had a lot of rust on him against UConn in the first half, so yeah he's going to need to get some reps," Kelly explained. "We'll make sure that we get him back to a level where he can lead our team."

The good news (if there was any) to take from Saturdays game is that Pike's left arm suffered no additional breakage.

"He's fine there, the X-rays are good," Kelly told us. "He lost some feeling with some numbness in there, so we wanted to go slow and gradually build that up. He's doing some exercises, gripping the ball, and doing those kinds of things. And he's doing all the mental reps, so we'll get him out here and practice him a little bit more tomorrow."

If Tony Pike can't go for any reason anytime Thursday night, coach Kelly won't be caught without an additional game plan and different package for the next man in, Chazz Anderson.

"We would do the same things we did at Marshall with Chazz (against USF)," said the coach. "We ran the football, play-action passed (against MU). We were expecting Tony to play the whole game (against UConn). And I'm not saying Chazz can't run our offense in that spread fashion, but it's not what he does right now as a red shirt freshman as well. We'll have a Chazz Anderson package and we'll have a Tony Pike package."

Despite the short week, coach Kelly and his coaching staff will be sure to have all members of his quarterbacks club ready for action if need be Thursday night, each one prepared with an individual game plan and package.

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