The question is -- who?
With incumbent starter Devin Gardner struggling, again, this time in the 26-10 loss versus Utah, Hoke put in backup Shane Morris late in the fourth quarter on Saturday, moments before the nearly three hour weather delay. After the delay, Morris would finish the last eight minutes of the 26-10 lost to the Utes.
Both quarterbacks struggled statistically. Gardner passed for 148-yards, on 14-of-26 passing with two interceptions. Morris finished with 42-yards on 4-of-13 passing with one interception.
With Morris seeing meaningful minutes on Saturday, a quarterback controversy has begun. Now, Hoke has a decision to make. But he isn’t tipping his hand either way based on both quarterbacks performances against Utah.
“I think they both did some really good things,” Hoke said. “And then they did some things not so good. I think if you’re looking for if one guy played better than the other? No, I don’t think so.
“But I think they both know what they need to do better. And they will. I think they both competed and made some good decisions also.”
Morris, who’s lone career start came in the 2013 Buffalo Wild Wings Bowl, solidified himself as Michigan’s backup this fall. And while he’s mostly played in mop-up duty, Hoke maintains he’s been “competing” for the starting spot since the start of fall camp.
“I think Shane had a really good fall camp,” Hoke said. “I think its continued. I think, when I sit up here and say, ‘there is competition.’ There truly has been competition the whole time. Yeah, do we feel comfortable? Do we feel confident? No question about it.”
However, when asked, Hoke says there is no plans of a platoon situation at quarterback moving forward.
“I think we would rather not,” Hoke said. “That’s not been in our discussions.”
Whoever Hoke decides to quarterback against Minnesota this Saturday, they’ll need to take control of an offense that has been held out of the end zone in their past two defeats.
“And then there is the leadership end of it, too,” Hoke said. “Who commands the offense. And they both have done a really good job all year of that. I don’t expect any of that to change from that standpoint.”
Now, will have to wait and see who that will be.
Michigan (2-2) plays host to Minnesota (3-1) this Saturday at 3:30 p.m.