Spring ball could go a long way in deciding things.
Then again, coaches could wait until next fall to pick a starter.
But one thing is certain: for the time being, the competition at quarterback is wide open.
Despite the bevy of rumors that have circulated since Wyoming head coach Joe Glenn hired Bob Cole as offensive coordinator in December, there are no early favorites at the gunslinger position, and coaches are content to wait and see how each of their signal callers performs this offseason.
"We wanted to provide an instant challenge and have an open battle right now at quarterback with the new coordinator and a new system," said wide receivers coach Ron Wisniewski. "It's anybody's job."
The Cowboys lost just one of their 2007 quarterbacks (Jacob Doss) to graduation this year and picked up two highly-touted newcomers in California high school prospect Adam Barry and Mesa Community College star Dax Crum. Barry is scheduled to arrive in Laramie after graduating this summer, and Crum is already enrolled and attending classes at UW.
Among the Pokes' returning passers are Chris Stutzriem, who just finished his redshirt season, Karsten Sween, who started all but one of the Cowboys' games last year, and Ian Hetrick, who filled in for Sween on several occasions during '07.
But new or old, Wisniewski wasn't about to rule out any of the group—regardless of experience level, reputation or past performances.
"It is wide open," he said. "(We have) absolutely (no preconceived ideas), or we would not have brought Dax (Crum) in if that would have been the case. Dax has as good a shot as anyone. So does Ian, so does Stutz(riem), so does Karsten."
Wisniewski added that Barry will also be given a chance to earn playing time after arriving, depending on how well he manages to learn the playbook during his last semester of high school.
"I'll tell you about Adam (Barry), he is a fierce competitor," Wisniewski said. "As soon as he graduates high school, he will be here in Laramie, and he will be striving to learn the offense because physically he can play. He's physically capable of playing as a D-I quarterback right now. He's big enough, he's strong enough and you can see how he throws, but it's a matter of how quick he picks up the system."
With the Cowboys installing a new offense next season, it's really a matter of how quickly each one of the Pokes' signal callers grasps Cole's system—including the ones who had a chance to showcase their skills to the team's head coach last year.
"You come in here with a new quarterback coach that doesn't even really know much about our team right now, and it's wide open," Glenn said. "Everybody knows that, and that's a good thing."
And with a fresh crop of talent and each of the players getting a clean slate, both Glenn and Wisniewski are confident they can find the right man for the job.
"Somebody's going to come out of that group and be a steady QB for us," Wisniewski said.
It's just a matter of time.
"You watch them compete," Glenn said, "and the cream will rise to the top."
Glenn: QB Situation Wide Open
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