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San Diego State football: Rocky Long discussess crowded quarterback position

Rocky Long holds his opening press conference for spring football, and the quarterback position is very crowded.

Brian Losness-USA TODAY Sports

San Diego State is one of the first teams to open up spring football in the Mountain West, and Rocky Long had his introductory press conference about what to expect over the next month.

The main issue for spring football will be for the Aztecs to find a new starting quarterback to replace Quinn Kahler. There is no shortage of players that Long can look to for a new signal caller as there are six quarterbacks on the roster heading into spring practice.

The most experienced of the group is Nick Bawden who saw significant action in two games, and that included a start against Fresno State. However, Bawden did not perform well at all last year and completed only13 of 38 passes for 147 yards, a touchdown, threw two interceptions and was sacked three times.

The other two that were on the Aztecs roster last year were Christian Chapman and Drew Anderson, but neither saw time. Bawden holds the experience card over those two.

San Diego State did bring a pair of transfers in former Oregon quarterback Jake Rodrigues last summer, and he is eligible to play after sitting out a year. The other is Maxwell Smith who transferred from Kentucky and is eligible to play right away, and there is Diablo Valley CC walk-on Adam Wood.

"[At] the quarterback position we are having hard time getting reps," Long said at his press conference on Monday. "We have six quarterbacks out there and are having a hard time getting enough reps out there to prove if they can play or not play.

"We are keeping statistics on everything they do. When they throw one-on-one what is their percentage on completion, when we throw pass skeleton what is their percentage, and we added a little team pass drill. So, we will try to do that for two weeks and give them all a chance. Then after two weeks try to determine who the top three guys are and let them battle it out."

Everyone is on an equal footing with a new offensive coordinator in Jeff Horton and a new quarterbacks coach coming in with Blane Morgan.

Another aspect to finding a quarterback will be in real game scenarios for every scrimmage and in the spring game.

"When we do scrimmage the quarterbacks will be live," Long said. "We might just get down to three quarterbacks just by injuries."

That might be considered a risky move but with very little experience at the quarterback position the coaches need to figure out who can perform in a situation that most resembles a game situation.