Bryan Bennett, the sophomore who lost the Oregon quarterback battle to redshirt freshman Marcus Mariota, has reconsidered transferring. Instead the talented sophomore is, according to The Oregonian, electing to stay in Eugene. From the Aaron Fentress report:
Oregon quarterback Bryan Bennett, who lost the starting job Friday to Marcus Mariota, had one foot out the door Tuesday before telling team members he will remain with the Ducks football team, according to a team source.
This is great news for Oregon, but more importantly, a smart move by Bennett. The sophomore could have picked up and taken off for 2012, looking to enroll elsewhere in a matter of days. He most certainly is talented enough to start for a lot of schools out there in the college football landscape.
However, as we saw a season ago with Darron Thomas, Chip Kelly's offense will always have areas of opportunity for the backup quarterback to get in the game. While we wish Mariota a healthy, successful season, odds are that Bennett is going to get his shot in 2012. Injuries happen all over the field, and when quarterbacks are put in harms way more often than normal, they often end up on the sidelines.
While the injury possibility is a real one, let's not forget that Mariota, for all of the hype, is still a redshirt freshman. He's never played under the lights. The bullets have never been live for him when it comes to taking on the opposition. He's never gone through a game week at the helm of one of college football's most dynamic offenses.
Bennett is wise to return. He's going to help his team, but he also stands to help himself. There's no need to run out early when he can wait and see what happens at his true school of choice before looking for greener pastures.
If a transfer is in the cards, so be it. However, right now Bennett should still get game ready. You never know when your number will be called.