Utah State head coach Matt Wells attempted a two-quarterback system last Saturday against Boise State with junior Craig Harrison and true freshman Darrell Garretson. Neither quarterback played well in the loss to Boise State, but Well has decided to go with the freshman Garretson.
Against Boise State Garretson completed just 9 of 14 passes for 116 yards, a touchdown but he also threw two interceptions. The one touchdown was more than what Harrison did, and that could be one of the reasons that Wells is going with the youngster
A likely reason that Wells did not start Garretson against Boise State was the lack of reps. The reps against Boise State coupled with the maturity that Wells saw from the freshman during the Boise State game is likely why he earned nod this week against New Mexico:
"I thought he kept his composure well, he acted good on the sidelines," Wells said. "When you ask a young quarterback 'What did you see?' after you just saw it, whether from a pressure or secondary situation and he tells you exactly how you saw it, he's dialed in. It gives you good confirmation that he is."
Another logical reason to start Garretson over Harrison is to go with the younger player. Garretson still has three more years of eligibility left this season, and so the coaching staff might as well get him ready for the future. Even with Chuckie Keeton more than likely going to be back next season from his torn ACL, the team has learned that they need a capable backup. If for some chance that Keeton has to redshirt in 2014 or something else happens to him, the Aggies will still have their quarterback of the future.
Also playing a role is that Utah State is going up against a weaker New Mexico defense and a bye the week after should allow Garretson to be more comfortable with more reps.