Life doesn't always take us where we want to go. Sometimes it takes us where we need to go. Bearcat football fans hope that's exactly the case for Columbus Whitehall Yearling's David Wess. David was a 1st team Division II all-state safety and a 2nd team all-state quarterback from Columbus two seasons ago. He signed a letter of intent to attend the University of Minnesota and hopefully lead the Golden Gophers into Columbus to defeat his hometown Buckeyes. Ohio State was interested in David but not as a quarterback. They saw him as a safety, but David knew he had to go to a school that would give him a chance to play the position he loved. That school was Minnesota until David came up a couple points shy on his standardized test score, and the NCAA denied him academic eligibility and labeled him a partial qualifier.
Minnesota basically pulled its scholarship offer which left David with limited opportunities due to the timing. Enter UC and Coach Dantonio, who quickly gained David‘s respect. "My high school coach was good friends with Coach Dantonio and called him. Coach Dantonio went out of his way to make me feel wanted. He's made me feel like I was part of the team and part of the program. He did everything to make me feel comfortable. I really respect him for that."
The next step for David is finding a position. Since he's a partial qualifier, he cannot participate in any spring drills, but he's attended spring practices watching and listening from afar to quarterback coach, Dan Enos, hoping to pick-up tips that will help him in August. David was identified by Coach Dantonio as one of the ten best athletes on the team. David believes that athleticism is one of his strengths as a quarterback. "I do a good job of staying on my feet and keeping the pocket alive. I can make something out of nothing." David's high school statistics support that assessment. David threw for 4,206 yards in his high school career and was 94 for 135 his senior season with 32 touchdown tosses.
If playing QB doesn't materialize at UC, David is prepared to use his athletic ability elsewhere. "If playing quarterback doesn't workout, I want to play the position that gets me on the field the fastest. If Coach (Narduzzi) thought it would be smart for me to play safety, I would. If Coach Treadwell thought it would be best for me to play receiver, I would." If David isn't the quarterback, I want to be the promoter for the battle that will ensue between Narduzzi and Treadwell for this talented athlete. After all, David is a 6 foot 2 inch 210 pounder that runs the forty in 4.5 seconds.
The quarterback battle this spring will be interesting enough, but in August it heats up even more with guys like David, Craig Carey and Dominick Goodman entering the equation. Coach Enos and Coach Dantonio have some tough decisions ahead.