After months of uncertainty, Pinellas County coaches now know which quarterbacks will be attending their school. What still is uncertain, at least with a few programs, is who will emerge as the starter. Here are six quarterback competitions that are heating up at fall practices.
Clearwater Central Catholic, Ian Coia vs. Eric Miller vs. Nick Newton
Coia and Miller are the more polished quarterbacks and will likely split time during the season, according to Marauders coach Mike Jalazo. But Newton is getting a strong look and Jalazo said he is designing some packages in which he will be behind center.
Countryside, Jimbo Chmelik vs. Ryan Dailey
Chmelik, who split time with Ryan Eppes as a starter last season, has a firm grasp of coach John Davis' newly installed no-huddle attack. That makes him the front-runner for the job. But he is being pushed by Dailey, who played on junior varsity last year.
Dunedin, Blair Jordan vs. Ryan Singer
The quarterbacks represent a contrast in styles. Jordan is the better runner. Singer, a transfer from Countryside, is the better passer. Falcons coach Mark Everett said he doesn't envision splitting time between the two during the season and would like to name a starter before the opener. "I've got an idea who it will be," Everett said. "But I'm not about to disclose that yet."
East Lake, Bobby Lyons vs. Matt McKenna vs. Blake Robles vs. Sam Shaffer
Eagles coach Bob Hudson was set to go with Shaffer and McKenna at quarterback. But that was before Lyons transferred from Clearwater Central Catholic and Robles transferred back to East Lake via Countryside. Hudson said if he had to choose a starter today, Shaffer would be the guy considering he took 85 percent of the reps in the offseason. Lyons and McKenna also will see time at linebacker.
Lakewood, Jacquez Jenkins vs. Victor Perkins vs. Bernard Reedy
Former coach Otis Dixon used all three in games last season and planned to do the same thing this year. But that was before Dixon resigned in June. New coach Cory Moore would prefer to go with one quarterback. It's not clear whom that will be.
Northeast, Kyle Craver vs. Ryan Moore
Last year, Moore was the erstwhile understudy to starter Armando Sanchez, who graduated. This season Vikings quarterbacks will do more than hand off the football. Coach Jay Austin is stressing more balance and is using some pro set and spread formations. Moore was impressive in the offseason and has a bit of an edge, according to Austin. But Craver has a lot of upside and could see some playing time as well.