August 14, 2008

McGee the right choice for the job

First of all, let's get this straight. I really like Jerrod Johnson. Really, I do. I think he's a very good athlete that will eventually make a very good quarterback. Eventually, however, is the key word. He's still working on things to make him a good quarterback in the pro-style offense of new head coach Mike Sherman.

Sure, he's improved greatly. And he has. He's gone from a gun-slinger that loves to run to a quarterback that can hang in the pocket, hit a receiver on the move and scramble for big gains when he needs to. It's scary how his improvement reminds me of Reggie McNeal in 2002 working on staying in the pocket and not running scared at the first sign of trouble. Later on that season McNeal has quite possibly the best single game in A&M history when he led the Aggies to an upset of No. 1 Oklahoma. Two years later, McNeal put up the single-most prolific season of any quarterback in A&M history.

The difference is that Johnson doesn't have a coach that will completely change his offensive scheme the following season that completely destroys the best asset your team has.

But for the 2008 season, Sherman made the right decision that was painfully obvious to anyone that has watched August camp. Senior Stephen McGee, the two-year starter, is the best quarterback on the Aggies roster. McGee has played in the option, zone read or whatever you want to call the offensive failure of the Dennis Franchione regime for years now. He led the team in rushing in 2007 despite having Jorvorskie Lane and Mike Goodson in the backfield, which has forced a label of run first, pitch second and pass 1,057th onto McGee.

It's so easy to forget, however, the ridiculous numbers he put up through the air while at Burnet High School where he threw for 8,256 yards and a Texas Class 3A record 101 passing touchdowns while throwing just 16 interceptions over three seasons as the starting quarterback. Half of those interceptions came as a sophomore and he went interception-less in the regular season as a senior.

So those who think McGee isn't a passing quarterback. You're wrong, and he's been proving it all camp long.

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