The Big Blue Nation has been torn asunder over the two candidates chosen to lead the offense. The first candidate is the establishment’s choice, due to his experience and relative maturity. He has been groomed for the very position of quarterback on this level, whereas his opponent’s collegiate development was slated for route-running and receiving. This electoral was his to win, until some recent decisions — mainly those that land at the feet of his running backs — have shaken the foundations of those who have promoted him.
The cries of change were no louder than on Saturday, when the challenger showed remarkable improvement in the Great Gainesville Debate. His supporters argue that change is necessary for success in the nation. His quick-thinking and fleet-footed scrambling ability adds a dimension to the offense necessary to move the chains of success. (Conversely his opponents argue that the best wide receiver removed from catching passes subtracts a dimension.) There is no arguing that his athletic ability and desire is a refreshing change; but what remains to be seen is that the youngster can perform at the same level of execution as the incumbent.
With today’s announcement that Cobb will start, one could assume the democratic process has served its purpose. The Big Blue Nation has spoken, and Commander in Chief Rich Brooks listened. Well, mostly listened; Brooks states that Hartline will see some series in the second and third quarter.
Is this the end of the contest? Hardly. If Cobb throws 3 INTs or commits a late-game critical mistake in any future game, the Hartliners arguments will pick back up again. There is only one true way to end a Quarterback Election: Make more good plays than bad. If one of these candidates can manage that, a true offensive leader (in the minds of the fanbase) can be had, who can lead us to victory over the Axis of Evil. Regardless, the current offensive system will putter until the end. There is no magic bailout plan that can fix multiple injuries on the offensive line and inexperience at wide receiver.
With the experience learned from the rest of this season, these weaknesses will become strengths. The offense will be frightening yet again. But neither Cobb nor Hartline will lead them. Instead, the overthrow of our putrid offensive civilization will be executed by one man:
Viva La Revolution! (Until somebody starts complaining that Ryan Mossakowski should be the starter.)