South Carolina Football: Making the Case for a Two Quarterback System

Lee Schechter@@leeschechterContributor IIIAugust 12, 2013

South Carolina's head coach Steve Spurrier has hinted toward a two quarterback system due to the impressive talent that the Gamecocks have at the position in Connor Shaw and Dylan Thompson.  Even though Shaw will take a majority of the snaps as the starter, there is still a resounding case for the controversial two quarterback system.

Like I said, the two quarterback system is controversial, but I am not saying that there is a quarterback controversy.  Shaw is the starter, though Thompson will garner a fair amount of action.  

With that all established, here is the case for a two quarterback system.


1.  Both are proven winners.

Shaw is entering his senior year and has played a major role in South Carolina's rise to relevance in the SEC.  He is 17-3 in his career as a starter and has an unblemished 10-0 record at home in Williams-Brice Stadium. 

Shaw flat out wins football games.  

He may not be the flashiest or cleanest quarterback out there, but he gets the job done by producing W's. 

Thompson has a smaller sample size, though when he gets playing time, he wins football games.  

He was key in the Outback Bowl victory over Michigan and also orchestrated wins over East Carolina and Clemson.

He also put up more than 300 yards of passing in both starts in 2012.  


2.  Both are great leaders

Shaw is a senior with a lot of experience and is ready to put together a memorable senior season.  

Last year, Shaw battled through some injuries, but he maintained a high level of play.  

He has good chemistry with his teammates and is a strong character player. 

Thompson has practiced with this team all spring long while Shaw has been recovering from his foot injury.  He impressed everyone in spring ball. 

Thompson has a great command of the field and his wide receivers.  He is ready to translate his practice success into in-game success in 2013. 


3. Differing styles of play

Shaw is the dual-threat quarterback.  Thompson is the pocket passer. 

The two different styles can be very effective if used properly.  Spurrier will know how to use these two studs of quarterbacks. 

Shaw can scramble and run the read-option.  

Thompson provides an under-center, pro-style offensive approach that will be a great changeup to the Shaw-led offense.  


4. Don't different styles mean a loss of momentum?  

Normally the answer is yes.  But with South Carolina, the answer is no. 

Very rarely can two quarterbacks swap in and out of a game without missing a beat.  Platooning quarterbacks is generally frowned upon around college football because it usually means that a team is struggling to find a quarterback at all. 

South Carolina does not need to worry about this.  The Gamecocks have two strong quarterbacks.  

Thompson is the best backup in the country.  He is ready to play at all times. 

Shaw and Thompson have experience of swapping in and out of the game.  

It worked well in the past. And it will continue to work in 2013. 


5. Thompson is really, really good.

Shaw is the senior with experience and there is no reason to move him aside.  But Thompson is that good.  

Thompson has an NFL-caliber arm and has a good feel for the pocket.  

Throw this redshirt junior on another team in the country and he would compete for the starting job at a lot of schools.  

He can find his targets.

He can air it out.  

He can win football games.

This kid deserves a lot of respect.  



Bottom line:

Shaw is the starter.  Thompson is the backup.  

There is no controversy. 

But if any team in the country is capable of running the two quarterback system, it is without a doubt South Carolina.  



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