“Crabcakes and football. That’s what Maryland does!” Danny O’Brien found this out during his time at the University of Maryland and decided that instead, he preferred beer, cheese and football. Personally, I can’t blame him; I’m not crazy for crab cakes.
I’m not crazy for Joel Stave either. Danny O’Brien should be the starting quarterback of the Wisconsin football team, just like he was at the beginning of the season.
O’Brien should never have lost his job. After all, he did outshine “Sunshine” in preseason camp.
Remember just a few weeks ago, when the Badgers were in the midst of losing an offensive coach and preparing for then-undefeated Utah State? These are not ideal circumstances for any quarterback.
So O’Brien faltered a bit. He completed just half his passes and lost a fumble. In came Stave to save the day. While Stave executed the comeback victory as the man under center, his two completions on six attempts and sparkling 2.5 yards per attempt were far short of what the Badgers need from their quarterback.
With a non-existent running game and a seemingly faulty offensive line, Wisconsin doesn’t need a robotic handoff machine. Instead, it needs a quarterback that can help win games with his arm. Danny O’Brien seems like the automatic choice.
Bret Bielema likes O’Brien’s passing game enough to name him the orchestrator of the all-important two-minute offense. If O’Brien is trustworthy enough to command the most important drive of a game, then why not the other drives?
At this point, the only thing I love about Stave is the amount of taglines you can make with his last name. Hip, Hip, Stave! Stave goodbye! But that’s where the love ends.
He has benefited greatly from a healthy Jared Abbrederis. Of Stave’s 424 passing yards since the Utah State game, 289 have gone to Abbrederis. O’Brien didn’t have Abbrederis in the game for his last four quarters as a starting quarterback. Give him a healthy Abbrederis, and he could have led a few more touchdown drives for the Badgers when they were in dire need of it against Nebraska.
So I’m a skeptic. I have been ever since I found out my roommate was the winning quarterback when he faced Stave in high school football.
Stave and his golden locks may have won the hearts of many students on campus, but Danny O’Brien still has mine.
Stave is the present and future quarterback for the Badgers
Are we really having this conversation? REALLY? C’mon man.
Joel Stave showed on Saturday he has the greatest potential at the starting quarterback spot and is deserving of keeping that role throughout the duration of the season. After a weekend playing against a strong Nebraska defense in front of a raucous sold-out crowd at Memorial Stadium with a solid stat line of 214 yards and a touchdown.
Sure, his 13 completions of his 24 passing attempts weren’t impressive, but a majority of the throws he missed were underthrown, a completely correctable mistake that will come with further repetition in a live game situation.
And Stave was constantly pressured throughout the duration of the game, as the quarterback was sacked three times. Eventually, Stave got a bit dinged up and looked a bit rattled, but some of the hits he took would have broken a lesser man.
I’m not sure if Stave will ever play in another environment like he did this past Saturday, and he will certainly grow from the experience moving forward. Seriously, I was at the game in Nebraska, and I couldn’t hear myself think. And to think the largest hostile crowd Stave had ever started in front of was just around 900 people. He showed true composure beyond anyone his age at the quarterback position I have seen in a long time.
Besides the intangibles, what about that arm on the kid? Stave showed his accuracy on a pair of deep throws to Abbrederis early in the game that showed a deep game that has been severely lacking throughout the early goings of the 2012 season.
Sure, there are going to be growing pains. Stave nearly threw two interceptions against Nebraska that were dropped, and at times his throws were far off the mark. This team has responded better to Stave under center for some reason, and the offense has shown noticeable signs of improvement with his time at the helm.
Just give this young quarterback some confidence and declare him the starter for the duration of the 2012 season. This quarterback shuffle game isn’t helping anyone. Obviously, there was a reason Danny O’Brien was benched and lost his starting job. Saturday night, Bielema’s gamble backfired, as O’Brien committed an error on the play call that resulted in a botched attempt to hand the ball to Montee Ball.
Or just have Curt Phillips take over, I don’t care. Just pick someone and stick to it!