ORONO – Friday will prove to be the most pivotal day of the Maine Black Bears preseason, as the football team will hold its second and final scrimmage of the summer. Not only will it be a chance for the coaches to evaluate individual performance up to this point in a mock-game situation, but it will be the last audition for all four prospective quarterback candidates to prove their value.
Head coach Joe Harasymiak anticipates to name the team’s starting quarterback this weekend following the scrimmage, which was pushed back to Friday due to the team’s ongoing injuries. While there have been no serious injuries, several members of the offensive line and other personnel have dealt with nagging issues that required rest. Alongside, the team is still practicing without two of its biggest impact players in wide receiver Micah Wright and defensive lineman Uchenna Egwuonwu, both out indefinitely due to suspension.
“We’ll have to rep it out with smaller reps within the series and longer breaks in between. We don’t want to tax anyone and lose anyone on top of what’s already been going on,” Harasymiak said Thursday.
Thursday’s practice saw redshirt freshman Chris Ferguson earn reps with the first team unit, sharing them with seniors Drew Belcher and Max Staver. Harasymiak wouldn’t tip his hat to who he is leaning towards, but indicated he is open through the end of the scrimmage to be impressed.
“You know, I think some guys have separated themselves,” he said. “So tomorrow will kinda be the last opportunity in a live situation to make that decision for us. And hopefully Saturday morning, we’ll come out with the news who our starting quarterback is just so we can get that settled and move on.”
The scrimmage will get underway at 2:15 p.m.