Coaches Confident in Kemp's Ability
On Monday during the Towson press conference, Ruffin McNeil announced that Blake Kemp will be the starting quarterback moving forward. McNeil and Dave Nichol have both expressed confidence in the JUCO transfer going into the first game of the season. “He’s pretty west coast chill,” Nichol said. “Which is good because the guys respond to him.” This seemed to be the theme going into the first game as both Nichol and Kemp discussed the importance of being able to get the other 10 guys to play well. Kemp tries to keep everyone positive and make sure they are locked in for the first game. “I just try to be the best teammate that I can be,” said Kemp. “I feel like if there is a positive influence for everybody else it makes them better.” Kemp also feels confident with the offensive system. He ran the same offense in JUCO at Mesa Community college and the staff has connections to Nichol. Kemp is also no stranger to this situation. At Mesa Community College, Kemp became the starter after an injury to the starting quarterback in the preseason. It’s well known that in 2012 Rio Johnson was named the starting quarterback and by week three Shane Carden took the reins and never looked back. Like Johnson, Kemp is also an unproven quarterback that will need to continue to earn the confidence of his coaches and peers. This puts emphasis on making sure that all the quarterbacks are ready to play, if needed. Backup Cody Keith was held out of practice for a few weeks with an ankle injury and James Summers was just added to the roster last week. Summers is making a transition back to quarterback after being recruited by East Carolina as a receiver. After a few weeks of game preparation and practice, Keith, Summers, and the rest of the quarterbacks should all be game ready. Keith is penciled in as the backup going into the Towson game. He has been plagued with injuries during his collegiate career and still is not 100 percent. Going into his junior season, Keith has been in the system longer than any quarterback, but with his injuries he has not been able to prove his knowledge of the offense in practice. Of the four quarterbacks listed on East Carolina’s depth chart, Summers may be the most athletic and intriguing. Summers is a JUCO transfer and is making the transition back to quarterback after being recruited to play receiver at ECU. The only question surrounding Summers is when he will be game ready. McNeill made it very clear that Blake Kemp is the starter moving forward and coaches and players have confidence in Kemp going into the first game.
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