Editorial

247Sports Says ‘It’s Not Time’ For Graham Mertz To Start For Wisconsin At Quarterback

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David Hookstead Smoke Room Editor-in-Chief

247Sports apparently thinks the Wisconsin Badgers quarterback battle between Graham Mertz and Jack Coan is already over.

Coan and the freshman phenom are in arguably the biggest QB battle in all of college football, and the play at the position will likely determine what kind of success the Badgers have this season. However, 247Sports doesn’t expect Mertz to see much time. (RELATED: Wisconsin 2019 Football Expectations: Can The Badgers Get 10 Or More Wins?)

 

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The popular publication wrote the following when explaining the Badgers quarterback situation and ongoing battle:

It’s not time for heralded sensation Graham Mertz just yet for the Badgers, but Wisconsin fans are salivating at his potential. This year’s team belong to Coan, who steps in following Alex Hornibrook’s transfer. Wisconsin was 29-6 in games Hornibrook started, but didn’t terrify opposing teams through the air. The Badgers’ coaching staff is confident this offense will be more productive with Coan under center.

Just to be clear here, I’ve been told Coan has a slight edge right now, but that the whole thing is miles from being over. In fact, that’s what I’ve heard pretty much across the board.

Now, that’s not to say Coan won’t take the first snap against USF and enter the season at the starter. I think there’s a high chance he does, but Mertz is the future beyond any shadow of a doubt. It’s not a matter of if he plays. It’s simply a matter of when.

In the meantime, there’s a high chance Coan plays until Mertz is ready to go.

Having said all of that, fans will riot if Mertz doesn’t get off the bench this season, especially if things go south.

We play an absolutely brutal schedule. It’s unbelievably tough. If Coan struggles even a little bit, fans will be shouting for Mertz.

I trust Paul Chryst’s judgement on the situation, but I also know how Wisconsin fans can be. They’re not exactly very forgiving of poor quarterback play.

We open the season August 30 against USF. We’ll have to see how the snaps gets split. I’m fully expecting Coan to get the first crack at the starting job, but we didn’t bring in the top quarterback in the 2019 class to ride the bench. That much is a fact.

Mertz will get his shot likely sooner than later. You best believe that.