Saturday marked the first and only time that fans could see the 2014 version of the Fresno State Bulldogs during fall camp. If the offensive production on the field is to be believed, the Central Valley should be encouraged about the team's chances at another conference title. What is still uncertain, though, is just who will be responsible for leading the charge back to the promised land.
The good news is that both quarterbacks in the hunt, Brian Burrell and Brandon Connette, raised their game in Saturday night's scrimmage, according to the Fresno Bee's Robert Kuwada. Burrell, who spent 2013 as Derek Carr's backup and is the presumptive leader in the quarterback competition for now, completed 12-of-18 passes for 163 and two scores to converted QB Myles Carr and Dillon Root. Connette, the much-hyped Duke transfer, finished 15-of-20 with 196 yards and two touchdown passes of his own. He was also able to flash the running ability that made him a viable dual-threat signal caller with the Blue Devils, pitching in with a 29-yard TD run.
The numbers have to be taken with a grain of salt since Derron Smith, Tyeler Davison and Charles Washington sat out the 83-play scrimmage, but it is a promising sign that both quarterbacks were able to repeatedly find favorable matchups and spread the ball around against a deep secondary: Root topped all receivers with 93 yards on six catches, but Myles Carr and Aaron Peck had 78 and 62 yards, respectively.
When the 'Dogs take the field again on Monday, the season opener against USC will be 20 days away. A lot can happen in three weeks, but for now the smart money on who will be under center still rides on Dave Schramm's words from the onset of camp. Connette and Burrell have both improved in the last week and a half, but it is presumptuous to say Connette has surpassed Burrell. The junior from Bakersfield still has the inside track for the starting role, at least for now.