Position-by-Position Breakdowns: Quarterbacks
Published: Friday, August 30, 2013
Updated: Friday, August 30, 2013 00:08
The camp competitions are over. The questions and debates are halted. The Bulls have decided on who will start under center and, as expected, it’s the man who led Buffalo to victory in three of its final four games.
Sophomore Joe Licata will be under center for what should be one of the most prolific offenses in recent memory at UB this football season.
Following long winter workouts and spring ball, Licata emerged as the obvious choice for head coach Jeff Quinn for the 2013 season.
With Licata at the helm, Buffalo scored at least 27 points in three of its final four games. The points explosion resulted in the Quinn era’s first win streak and also marked the first time the Bulls found the end zone three times in three consecutive games under Quinn.
Through his time on the field, Licata gained what he calls the most important facets of the game for a quarterback at any level: experience and confidence.
“I think with the quarterback position, the most important thing is experience and last year, I didn’t have experience,” Licata said. “I was learning as I was going last year, but now I have a year under my belt, [starting] four games, [playing] in 10 or 11 of them. [I] really gained experience and with that, confidence. I’m more confident than I’ve ever been and ready to go.”
Quinn noted Licata’s increased presence in the film room has helped the quarterback’s understanding of coverages, which allows him to hang in the pocket longer as he watches plays unfold.
“Last year, we weren’t anywhere near what I would consider a dominant offense,” Quinn said. “We were good, but we weren’t great and we need to be great. It’s part of the maturation process that takes place. He’s a second-year player, but he’s worked extremely hard.”
There is a lot of hype about this team’s chances to compete for a MAC Championship and one cliché in football is certain – a quarterback is a necessity to a winning team. Licata’s ability to create plays vertically will be a huge factor in how many games the Bulls win.
He hopes to pick up where he left off last November.