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August 12, 2012

Coaches, QBs review scrimmage

Arizona State held a 3-plus hour closed scrimmage at Sun Devil Stadium Saturday with one of the focal points the quarterback position.

With coaches expected to cut a majority of the reps to two players early next week, one of ASU's scholarship players could fall by the wayside.

Sophomore Taylor Kelly was the first quarterback to see the field, which has overwhelmingly been the case in the last week's practices. He threw one of two interceptions hauled in my safety Keelan Johnson, the other coming off the arm of redshirt freshman Michael Eubank, who was the second quarterback in the scrimmage.

Here's what all three as well as head coach Todd Graham and offensive coordinator Mike Norvell -- neither of whom tipped their hat as to which direction they were leaning -- about the competition following the scrimmage.

Todd Graham

"We threw a lot at them to see how they would respond. It serves as a great evaluation for us. We'll know where we're going, you'll probably see two guys get the majority of the reps next week. And then we'll go to Camp T and come out of Camp T and hopefully have a starter or two guys are going to play. We could do that. Two guys could play."

Mike Norvell

"I'm going to get a chance tonight and tomorrow and take a look at the film and really evaluate where we are as an offense. I'll look at the quarterbacks and see which guys present the best opportunity for us to win football games, because it's getting closer every day. You can't rep three quarterbacks. That's something that is extremely rough."

"Really it shows me the quality that we have. I really feel good about these guys. It's not that anybody is playing down. That would probably worry me more if we had three guys that I didn't feel comfortable with, but these guys are all so good. They're just very different. I think if they had a lot of the same skill set, then it'd probably be easier to pinpoint who would be the guy."

Taylor Kelly

"Today went good. We have a lot of critiquing to do with the 1 offense and 2 offense but I thought I did well managing the offense, moving the ball down the field We completed some shots downfield, the offensive line did a really good job protecting me with the blitz that the defense was bringing and we ran the ball well. Cam Marshall had a big run, James Morrison, D.J. Foster and Marion (Grice)."

"I had one (interception), Brandon Magee was scraping off the edge and I had to get it off quick and Keelan undercut it and got it."


"We got down to the six inch mark and had three chances and couldn't punch it in so we've got to get better at that."

Michael Eubank

"I definitely think I've elevated since the spring and definitely think I showed the coaches I can maintain in this offense and coming down to two quarterbacks I definitely think I'm one of them."

"Tonight I think I faced adversity well. After I threw my interception, I was able to come back in and sustain drives (and) show the offense that I can control my emotions and I can definitely control the offense and move the ball."

"I definitely had one (interception, his self-reported first in a team period all camp) today and wish I could have it back but you've got to move on. That's what the coaches teach. If you mess up you've got to be able to put your helmet on and come right back out."

"I have a safety read into the boundary and the safety backed up into the boundary so I work strong and they ended up dropping three and I didn't see the third person and he ended up taking it. The defense made a great play, that's their job and what they do."

Mike Bercovici

"There's certain parts of it where, you're in a scrimmage like this, you get a drive and start feeling comfortable and you're off for 10 minutes. That starts playing with your head, you want to get the rhythm, be in there, stuff like that. But the way it's set up, is that we're all confident in our ability, whether it's with the 1s or the 2s, we're all getting an equal shot and coach isn't judging us any way different."

"Not good enough (running the ball). This offense thrives off the run game and the only drives we did have, is when Cam, Marion and we started getting really downhill. That's why we struggled in the pass game because there was a lot of third and long, like third and 14."

"One of the things our defense does, third and long, they're not afraid to blitz, but those DBs all know where the sticks are. That's your worst nightmare as a quarterback because you want to have time and be able to look down field, but then when they're forcing you to go hot, they're winning. You've got to rely on a guy like Jamal catching the ball two yards downfield and making a play. That's where you've got to give credit to the defense. But we should never even be in those positions."


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