Harris addresses quarterback issue

Pitt head coach Walt Harris addressed the media this afternoon, touching on topics such as who will start at quarterback this season.

When camp begins tomorrow morning, the question will still remain: Who will be the Panthers' quarterback?

At the moment, Walt Harris is no closer to knowing than anyone else.

"I'm waiting for someone to step up," Harris said. "There should be no question who should be playing."

Harris did say he's looking for a guy who can execute under pressure and that the older guys, redshirt junior Rod Rutherford and redshirt sophomore Pat Hoderny, have the best opportunity to win the starting nod.

But that doesn't mean true freshmen Tyler Palko and Luke Getsy should be ruled out completely.

"They are the two most dedicated quarterbacks we've had around here since Pete Gonzalez," Harris said. "We're going to give the younger guys an opportunity to see what they can do."

While it's speculated that Rutherford will be the Panthers' starter, he doesn't see it as his job to lose.

"I'm looking at it as something for me to take," Rutherford said.

Hoderny's not about to be counted out, though.

"I'm confident going into camp, I think it's pretty even," Hoderny said. "I'd rather have great competition than having nobody that's going to push you, at least this way you know you're going to get better."

Getsy knows the competition will be helpful as well - especially with fellow newcomer Palko.

"It's going to be good for both of us," Getsy said. "It will push us all the time."

Both Getsy and Palko, who have been talked about as "students of the game," recognize the changes from high school football.

"You know what the coaches expect of you and they're harder on the quarterback than any other position but I'm comfortable with that," Palko (shown at right) said.

"This is a different level and it's so much more fun to get to learn every little detail," Getsy said. "I've been here a couple of days for camp and have learned a tremendous amount."

Harris believes the best scenario for the young quarterbacks would be to take a redshirt this season, but only time will tell if their services will be needed.

For now, he's just interested in finding that guy who can lead the team.

"I don't just think about throwing, it's about getting the ball in the endzone," Harris said. "It's who wins for us."


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