Friday, August 6, 2010

Why is nobody talking about Charlie Goro?

Look at our poll to the right of this page. Since the spring, we've been asking which Vandy quarterback will starting by the end of the season.

And which quarterback has a commanding lead?

Charlie Goro.

Now look at the Tennessean's story today about the Vandy quarterback battle. Three guys are mentioned:

• Larry Smith, the returning starter who says he was really getting comfortable back there when he was injured against Georgia Tech.

• Jordan Rodgers, the junior college transfer and of course brother of Aaron who says it's Larry's "job to lose" but that he believes he's got an advantage because he's already played two full seasons of JUCO ball.

• Jared Funk, who coaches say has an NFL arm but for some reason hasn't thrown a pass for the Commodores in four years, and who is optimistic that with Robbie Caldwell at the helm "a little bit of change might occur."

So who's missing from the story?

That's right, Charlie Goro. And for the record, Caldwell has mentioned Goro in interviews before, usually as a helpful side note BECAUSE NOBODY IN THE MEDIA IS EVEN MENTIONING GORO.

Everybody is dazzled by the fact that Rodgers' brother plays for the Packer, obsessed with talking about how much Larry struggled, and falling for all the coaching staff's mentions of Funk, who's being rewarded for five years at Vandy by getting his name in the newspaper instead of getting playing time.

Meanwhile, Goro continues to fly under the radar. And, really, if nobody's asking Caldwell and the other coaches about Goro, then why should they volunteer his name?

If Goro is the real deal, then Caldwell would love nothing more than to catch opponents off-guard early in the season. Maybe let Jordan Rodgers get lots of work in the open practices, get all the fans excited about Aaron's little brother, and then redshirt him and unveil Goro.

Just a thought. There are other theories, of course, both for and against each quarterback:

For: He's a terrific athlete, perfect for our offense and has worked out all the kinks last season after being unfairly blamed for our weak receivers and shabby offensive line play.
Against: Sure, he's got some skills, but he's not a leader, he doesn't respond well to pressure, and we need to go in another direction.

For: He's got the bloodlines, and while that doesn't always translate, he's got the arm, the mobility and the intangibles of his brother and he needs to start from Day 1.
Against: There's a reason he wasn't highly recruited out of junior college and had to settle for Vandy. He's got some skills, but they won't stand out against SEC defenses.

For: Bobby Johnson brought quarterbacks along too slowly and simply overlooked Funk, and Caldwell recognizes the mistake and will rectify it. Sure, it's a shame Funk hasn't played yet, which is why he should start now.
Against: Sheez, he hasn't thrown a pass in four years on campus and he was playing on the punt coverage team last year just so he could get on the field. Let's move on already.

For: He's Vandy's first-ever Parade All-American and he's got the leadership qualities and intangibles needed to get this team over the hump. Let's give him four years to do it.
Against: He was only a two-star quarterback by Scout and ESPN, and he's not being mentioned right now because he's not better than the other three guys.

One factor here is time: Robbie Caldwell doesn't have a lot of it. He's got to win now. So what does he do?

Does he go with the most experienced guy, Larry Smith, because the most experienced guy ought to do the best job right now?

Does he go with the big-name guy, Jordan Rodgers, because it will energize the fans, who seem to have already written off Larry, and maybe even excite the team? If he can excite fans and make them hopeful for the future, then maybe they'll forgive losses, which we're supposed to produce plenty of this season.

Is he loyal to Funk, the fifth-year senior who supposedly has an NFL-caliber arm but hasn't played yet?

Does he go with Goro, the least experienced quarterback, but possibly the wisest long-term move because he'll be on campus for another four years and because he's restless to play and might jump ship if he carries a clipboard another season? But then again, if Goro's not ready now but plays anyway, then Caldwell won't be around to watch him shine later.

Decisions, decisions.

What do you think? And why the heck is nobody besides us even mentioning Goro?

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