Frosh Bonnafon continues to impress

True freshman Reggie Bonnafon didn't have a ton of experience at quarterback coming into the University of Louisville. But the Trinity High School product continues to impress the U of L coaching staff during fall camp.

The biggest question many fans had about Reggie Bonnafon coming into his freshman season at the University of Louisville was: "What position will he play in college?

The former Trinity High School standout only played one season of varsity quarterback for the Shamrocks, also playing a starring role as a junior at wide receiver.

But after fall camp, there's no question what position Bonnafon will play at U of L.

"He's a quarterback," U of L coach Bobby Petrino said. "And I think he's going to be a very good one at that."

The 6-foot-3, 206-pound Bonnafon drew rave reviews from the coaching staff and his teammates all throughout fall camp. He's currently running as the No. 2 quarterback on the team and the coaching staff is trying to decide if they want to give him regular playing time this season.

"Well that’s something we’re really considering," Petrino said. "He’s doing a really nice job. I’m really impressed with his maturity. He works extremely hard at it, you know he jumps in the huddle and takes command, and he certainly can make the throws that you need him to make.

"It’s about timing and getting the ball out of his hand on time, but he’s certainly doing a nice job of it. And I'm really impressed so far."

Bonnafon started fall camp in the practice with the newcomers but was moved after two days into the veterans practice.

During the public scrimmage, Bonnafon led the QBs with two touchdown passes and was even thrown in with the first team offense on several occasions by Petrino.

"I wanted to see how he would react," said Petrino, noting Bonnafon led the team on a TD drive. "He's really mature."

Offensive coordinator Garrick McGee said he's spent a lot of time with Bonnafon since he arrived on campus and noted that he's "worked so hard and come a long way," in just two months. Bonnafon wasn't enrolled last spring but was able to come to watch practice because he was a signee who was from in town.

McGee said he's farther along than the coaching staff figured he would be at this point of his young career.

"There’s a lot coming at him, but he's been good," McGee said. "Our offense is a multiple offense – a lot of shifts and motions. He's seeing multiple fronts, so it's a lot for him, plus the grind of camp for the first time.

"But I think doing a good job. He’s mature and he's a confident kid. He comes to the film room ready to study. He comes with a highlighter and takes notes and he's got really good natural instincts. There's a lot to like."

Bonnafon played behind Trinity All-state quarterback Travis Wright, finishing second on the team in receiving as a junior.

But last season he took over the reins. In his first varsity season at quarterback, Bonnafon completed 190 of 306 passes for 2,606 yards and 16 touchdowns with eight interceptions for the Shamrocks. He also rushed 165 times for 895 yards and 18 touchdowns.

Bonanfon, the first commitment in the Class of 2014, stayed committed through the coaching change and Petrino's new system is a lot like the one he ran at Trinity.

"It is and that's helped," Bonnafon said. "Plus this summer, being able to be with the coaches for meetings, I see it helped me out a lot. I can tell I am more comfortable."

Bonnafon said early in training camp that he "hears what he says," about Petrino noting the starting QB job was up for grabs.

But the youngster didn't fret over it.

"I just want to do whatever the team needs me to do," he said. "If I have to play that's fine, if they need my legs that's fine. We're in good hands with Will, I just want to play my role and whatever that is I am fine with it."

With one week left before the Miami game, that role appears to be the backup. But he's been so impressive the coaches could be forced to get him some snaps for experience.

"He's not in awe by the situation," McGee said. "I'm really impressed."


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