Rutgers coach Kyle Flood named Chris Laviano as his starter for Washington State, and remains loyal to the red-shirt sophomore after two straight losses.
Flood listed Laviano as the starter yet again for Kansas, and interim coach Norries Wilson addressed the decision after Wedneday’s practice.
“I think everyone knows you’ve got to put the best players on the field,” Wilson said. “We’d be doing a disservice if we didn’t put out there who we thought were the best players. Coach Flood put out a depth chart that reflects his opinion on each position, not just the quarterback position, each position. Right now ... the depth chart is what Coach put out.”
Laviano is 0-2 as the starting quarterback, and the offense averages 23.2 points per game with Laviano in charge. He replaced Hayden Rettig as the starter after he served his suspenison for a curfew violation in the first half against Norfolk State.
“He’s done some good stuff,” Wilson said. “He hasn’t been perfect. I’m not going to sit here and tell you he’s been perfect, but he’s done a lot of good things – a lot more good than bad. Coach McDaniels is going to make sure that he’s got the game plan down perfect so we can go out and execute on Saturday.”
Laviano has four touchdown passes, four turnovers and 593 passing yards this season.
“He gets some growing pains, some things he may not fully understand if somebody throws a new coverage at him that he hasn’t been prepared for or if he gets a different front or a different look that we haven’t adjusted to quickly,” Wilson said. “We’ve got to make sure we do everything to help him, so he can be as successful as he can be.”
Rutgers (1-2, 0-1) does not plan on rotating quarterbacks because of the challenges it creates for the rest of the offense.
“The quarterback is leading everybody,” he said. “He’s telling everybody what to do and how to do it and when to do it and what’s changing. At running back you can take a guy out and put another guy in, you calm him down. If you start moving quarterbacks around, you’ve got different cadences, the line gets accustomed to hearing a certain guy. There’s a lot of small details involved in it where you can’t just pull a guy out and put another guy in.”
Laviano was not available to the media this week.