Borges Thrilled With Play From His Senior QB

Auburn, Ala.--First year Auburn offensive coordinator Al Borges says he really liked what what he saw from Jason Campbell in spring training.

Now, 11 games into a still unbeaten season for the Tigers, Borges says he loves what he is seeing from the fifth-year senior quarterback who has a great chance to be named the SEC Offensive Player of the Year.

"Tell me who is playing better?" says Borges, who notes that if had a vote for the Heisman Trophy he would cast it for Campbell. "He would be the first guy," Borges says.

"If you can, tell me who is playing better for what he is asked to do now? You have got to remember that he ain't throwing 40 passes a game. We don't do that. It would be bad coaching if we did that when we have two NFL backs (Carnell Williams and Ronnie Brown) in the backfield.

A finalist for the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award and a semi-finalist for the Davey O'Brien Award and one of the 10 players under consideration for the Walter Camp Award as the top player in college football, Campbell has completed 150-219 passes for 2,137 yards with 16 touchdowns. He has thrown five interceptions and has a quarterback rating of 170.0. Pat Sullivan's QB rating in his Heisman season at Auburn, 1971, was 133.5.

Jason Campbell passes vs. Georgia in Auburn's 24-6 over the Bulldogs.

"Who is playing better?," Borges adds. "Who has led their team. Who has had the largest margin of victory. That is all him, and it is not just the passing. The passing is the thing that everybody notices, but the thing that Jason does is get you in and out of good and bad plays on a consistent basis in every single game. It doesn't matter if there are 83,000 people screaming in the stands or there is 87,000 in our own stadium. He is always the same. He has a way of maintaining his composure so that we can play.

"I think it is exemplary for the entire offense. I think it is contagious. They see his poise, they stay poised. I would have been concerned if anybody else would have been playing quarterback at halftime of this last game (vs. Alabama, but I was not concerned with him playing quarterback."

Campbell and the offense came out and scored on three straight possessions to take control of the game in Tuscaloosa vs. archrival Alabama.

Borges says that believes the six-foot-five quarterback with a strong arm will have a great chance to play in the NFL next season. "No doubt," the quarterback coach says.

"I am going to tell you why. When I talked to NFL scouts early in the year, and I talked to several guys, I said this kid really has a chance, but I want to take him through some games. I have got one foot on the soapbox. I have got both up now. I am standing on top and screaming from the mountain tops because this kid can play in that league because has got what it takes to play in that league--he can pass.

"He is also athletic enough to get out of jams. He has got enough sense to handle any offense. God knows he has proven that. You tell me what is wrong with him and I will give you an argument against it. I don't see anything wrong with him at this point."


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