Spring surprises often times have a way of disappearing in the fall. So what will be the fate of Florida’s 2015 spring surprise? Will walk-on quarterback Jacob Guy retreat to the obscurity of the scout team in September? Or will he emerge as, gulp, the Gators’ starting quarterback in what would one of those feel-good, didn’t-see-that-one-coming stories?
Either could happen. What’s more likely, though, is Guy will fall somewhere in between the two extremes. Based on what he’s done this spring, he’s not going to disappear, he’s going to keep competing and continuing to be a factor at the position through the the summer and into the fall. Could he beat out the two scholarship players in front of him — Treon Harris and Will Grier — to become the starter? Well, let’s just say that’s a very long shot, but don’t rule it out just yet. There’s certainly a chance he could move all the way up to No. 2 to become the next guy in line in the fall. And once he’s in that position, anything can happen.
The only hard facts we have on Guy at the moment are that he threw for a bunch of touchdowns and yards at Dade City Pasco in his senior season. He has a big arm. He has prototype drop-back quarterback size (6-foot-5, 224 pounds) and seems to fit the mold of a Jim McElwain pro-style quarterback.
Here’s something else I’ve found out about him in the past week. He nearly got the call to duty last season. From what I’ve been hearing, the former offensive coaching staff has expressed regret that it didn’t turn the ball over to Guy at some point last season to see what he could do. He tore it up on the scout team, completing a bunch of passes against a very good defense and secondary. There was talk of playing him in the second half of the season, but it turned out to be only that — just talk.
Now, with the arrival of a new coaching staff, all the quarterbacks are starting over in a new offense. When Harris left to deal with a family tragedy last week, Guy got more reps and did enough good things to catch the attention of McElwain and offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier. Now, he is one of four quarterbacks competing for the starting job, joining Harris, Grier and Skyler Mornhinweg.
It’s tough for a walk-on just to get himself into the position Guy is in now, so he’s beaten the odds already. Now, it will be intriguing (and maybe the story of the spring) to see what he can do with this rare opportunity.
Maybe he’ll disappear. Maybe he won’t.
One thing we do know is the competition at QB is not what we thought it was going to be this spring. It’s not just Harris vs. Grier. There’s another Guy involved — and he’s legitimately in the hunt for the starting role.