Redshirt junior and #1 quarterback Chris Lewis will not play, nor will he travel, for Stanford's opening game at Boston College, as a result of a minor NCAA violation. Ted Leland made the announcement today, but it is clear that further details on this minor infraction are not being disclosed.
"It is unfortunate that Chris will not be able to play at Boston College," said Leland. "The nature of the violation will remain confidential. We are supportive of Chris and look forward to his return for our September 14 game with San Jose State."
This incident in no way impacts how Buddy Teevens views Chris Lewis as his offensive and team leader, nor are there any apparent repercussions for his place on this team after the road opener.
"Chris Lewis is our No. 1 quarterback," said Teevens. "We expect him to return to the lineup and start our second game with San Jose State on September 14. He is an outstanding young man of high character and integrity and I am excited about what he brings to our team, both on and off the field."
The team has to quickly put this behind them and put their focus on the personnel that is available to them at the quarterback position for this game. Kyle Matter is today announced by Teevens as the starter, and Ryan Eklund will be the #2 quarterback. There is the expectation that both will play in the game.
The good news is that Matter has made great strides in the first two weeks of training camp, and I had already come to the conclusion that he in a position to run this offense with some productivity. Albeit, I think his arm strength cannot match that of Lewis, and it may change some of the play calls, but an offense predicated on timing and many different looks to confound a defense should enjoy success beyond just with Chris Lewis.
As with any occurrence that takes away your number one quarterback, the focus shifts not to just the new #1, but also the new #2. Ryan Eklund needs to have the best week of his Stanford career this week, to put himself in the best possible situation to succeed. All four quarterbacks past Lewis will undoubtedly see more snaps and work than they have seen the last two weeks - the opportunity is there.
I will gather more information at this afternoon's practice, and report back this evening. The reactions and resultant preparation of this team will be something to watch closely. Buddy Teevens surely has found his first moment of great pressure earlier than he might have anticipated, and we will see how he responds.