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UMass Football Has a Quarterback Conundrum With A.J. Doyle and Mike Wegzyn

Charley Molnar wants no part of a quarterback controversy or competition, so we'll just go ahead and call what's going on in Amherst a quarterback conundrum.

A.J. Doyle is the starter for now, and he should be moving forward.
A.J. Doyle is the starter for now, and he should be moving forward.
Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

We've all been there. Its the third quarter and your quarterback on Madden or NCAA has thrown four picks but the game is still relatively close. So you go to the backup, you throw for a touchdown and even though you still lose, you can't help but feel like maybe its time to turn that Franchise/Dynasty around with a shakeup under center.

That is essentially what happened with the UMass Minutemen this weekend against Bowling Green. Starting quarterback A.J. Doyle stunk up Doyt Perry Stadium through nearly three quarters before Charley Molnar made the switch and the Minutemen finally put a score on the board.

Mike Wegzyn led a 10-play, 71-yard drive that ended with a touchdown to Tajae Sharpe on his second drive after leading a 52-yard drive that ended with a pick on his first possession. In total, Wegzyn was 7-for-8 for 76 yards, a touchdown and an interception while Doyle managed just 20 yards on 4-for-17 passing.

The starter for much of last season, the offseason, and the first few games of this season, Wegzyn could easily be plugged back into the starting lineup without much stress being put on his teammates. Just because it could be done doesn't mean it should be done, however.

For UMass, a quarterback change would further delay the Minutemen from developing at the most important position on the field. Molnar has given Doyle the reins and he needs to stick with him or this already anemic offense will just continue to hinder UMass and put even more stress on a defense that has overachieved and is nearing its physical breaking point.

There is no discernible difference between Wegzyn and Doyle on the field. Sometimes Doyle's perceived strengths (quick decisions, athleticism) show in Wegzyn's game. The same can be said of Doyle who showed off some really nice arm strength on what should have been a huge completion to Sharpe. The one thing I can comfortably say about the pair of signal callers is that they are inconsistent, and that isn't a glowing endorsement by any stretch.

So if there is no real difference between the two, you have to stick with the guy who has taken hold of the position for the sake of continuity. That guy is A.J. Doyle and, despite his dismal performance this weekend, I am perfectly comfortable with him as the quarterback of this team moving forward.

Conundrum, noun: a confusing and difficult problem or question.

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