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Mark Richt: Malik Rosier Is The Miami Hurricanes Starting Quarterback

Alex Donno
July 18, 2018 - 4:51 pm

When the Miami Hurricanes begin fall camp in early August, there won't be quarterback competition... at least not for the starting job. 

Speaking in a media scrum at the ACC Kickoff in Charlotte, Mark Richt declared that redshirt senior Malik Rosier will be Miami's starting quarterback for the second consecutive year. Rosier led Miami to a 10-3 season and a Coastal Division title in 2017, and he has an 11-3 overall record as a starting QB. He gets the nod over redshirt freshmen N'Kosi Perry and Cade Weldon, and true freshman Jarren Williams. 

Here's Richt's explanation on the decision to stick with Rosier, as reported by Christy Chirinos from the South Florida Sun Sentinel: 

“Malik is, without a doubt, the No. 1 quarterback going into fall camp and right his minute, I’m not sure anybody’s going to be able to unseat him, at least going into Game One,” Richt said. “I will have an open mind and we’ll give reps and we’ll compete, but here’s the thing about Malik — and I’ll say this, even from my standpoint — when time passes, the emotion of the season ends and you go back and review game, film, coaches copy, TV copy, and just kind of watch what happened last year — he made a lot of big plays in some really big moments, and without it, we’re not going to win. He made some great plays with his wheels, he ran the ball well and did some things that if he doesn’t do the things that he did, we probably don’t win 10 games last year.”

Pressed further, Richt continued: “He’s the starter. Malik’s the starter, and if something changes, I’ll let you know. … I don’t anticipate anybody knocking him out of the box right now.”

Rosier has become a polarizing figure among Miami's fans. He ended 2017 on a 3-game losing skid. His completion percentage last year was an underwhelming 54.0. He threw 10 of his 16 interceptions over the final 6 weeks of the season. Rosier and Miami's tremendous 10-0 start feels like a distant memory after the season's rough finish. 

As a result, a vocal faction of Hurricanes fans were hoping and petitioning for N'Kosi Perry to get a chance as the starter. The redshirt freshman is a former four-star recruit and has earned plenty of well-deserved hype from Miami's fans. So, why isn't 2018 N'Kosi's time?

I'm asking Hurricanes fans to trust Mark Richt on this for two reasons. 

For starters, can we all sit back and agree that Richt knows his quarterbacks better than any of us fans and media members do? Richt wants to win games and compete for championships. Do you really think he would align himself with a quarterback he does not believe puts his team in the best position to win? Sure, we've all fallen in love with Perry's highlight reel from Ocala Vanguard, but we don't have a full grasp of how well he performs in the full context of Miami's offense. Richt does. 

And that leads me to reason number two: Perry has not taken a single collegiate snap. Of course, this doesn't definitively mean he isn't great or cannot be great, but it gives you an idea as to why Richt would put more trust in a veteran signal caller with 14 starts under his belt over a player with this many unanswered questions. Let's also remember that Miami opens their season against LSU, not a cupcake. None of us should hope this happens, but early-season struggles for Rosier could lead to a reopening of the quarterback competition. The only thing we know for sure is that Rosier will be under center to open Miami's 2018 campaign on September 2nd.

I'm expecting N'Kosi Perry to be the quarterback of the future for the Miami Hurricanes. I just don't expect that future to fully begin until 2019. Even after this season comes to a close, he'll have three years of eligibility remaining. 

If we exercise some patience, we might just be pleased with Rosier's ability to bounce back and perform.