AMHERST, N.Y.-Jeff Quinn started chuckling before the first question was even finished at today's UB Football Media Day press conference. Not because the question was funny, but rather because the head coach of the Bulls knew exactly what was going to be asked.
The most pressing question facing the Bulls this season is who will lead the team at the quarterback position. Coach Quinn has narrowed it down to two candidates: Junior Alex Zordich and Redshirt Freshman and Buffalo-native Joe Licata.
"Both of those kids, Joe and Alex, have done a great job, and both of them are going to help us win football games this year," Quinn said. "Today I'm not making an announcement on who's the starting quarterback...but our team has great confidence in both of them."
Quinn says the competition for the starting job is very close at this point and that it's a good thing for the team and both candidates. "I think it has been healthy for our team to see both of these young men...they're making each other better" Quinn said. "They both want that opportunity, they both want to be the starting quarterback. But we know only one is going to be able to take that first snap against Georgia."
That first snap in Georgia will be a critical one for the Bulls, as they will be taking on a national perennial power and the number 6-ranked Bulldogs. Zordich was a true freshman starter for the Bulls two seasons ago before he was injured. Quinn hinted that his experience might give him an edge considering their first week trip to a top-ranked team.
"You certainly gain a lot of experience and knowledge by being in a program for three years," Quinn said. Zordich comes from a football family; his dad played for both Penn State and in the NFL for the Philadelphia Eagles and his brother also plays for Penn State. As a Redshirt Freshman, Licata has also been around the program for a year. He also won the Connolly Cup as the WNY High School football player of the year and the Class A New York State Player of the Year as a senior at Williamsville South.
"As a coaching staff we've talked about who's going to give us the best opportunity to go down there and relax, we know it's going to be an intense environment, and go out there and compete and play the way you've been coached," Quinn said. "The one that gives us that best opportunity is the one that is going to take the first snap."
In the event that the coaching staff does not make a clear-cut decision between Zordich and Licata, Quinn hasn't ruled out the possibility of a two-quarterback system. "It's been in discussion. What you're trying to do as a football coach is get your best players out there at all times, so I think you have to look at all of those options," Quinn said. "But one can only play at one time, we're not going to put them out there at the same time."