I have seen it debated all over social media about who will be the quarterback for the Louisville Cardinals when they open up against Notre Dame on September 2nd. I don’t think there is really anything to debate. Jawon Pass gives you the best chance to win – not just that game, but every game.
Lamar Jackson passed the torch to Jawon at the end of the 2017 season. If you remember correctly, many people, including Bobby Petrino, said that the offense may be even better than the Lamar era because the passing game would be much improved. I fell hard for that line (among other Petrino quotes). So Jawon basically had the task of following, in my opinion, the greatest college football player ever and he had the added pressure of making one of the nations most prolific offenses even better. Oh, and by the way, you get defending champion Alabama in your first game as a starter.
You may also remember that the Louisville offensive line was expected to be one of the best lines that Louisville has assembled in quite a long time.
Expectations on Jawon and this team were very high despite the “experts” saying Louisville would only win 8 games.
Jawon played well against Alabama. He went 20-39 for 252 and 3 touchdowns. He also threw 2 interceptions. Not the greatest game ever but not bad considering opponent and his first collegiate start. Next came the monsoon game against Indiana State. He was benched in the 3rd quarter. After only 3 pass attempts (2 were dropped by receivers), he was benched against Western Kentucky in the 1st quarter. He did not start against Virginia but started and played the whole game against Florida State. In the game against Boston College, he was benched for freshman Jordan Travis but the coaches failed to tell him he was out of the game. After the game he was asked when he found out that he had been benched for Travis, he said ” When I saw him grab his helmet and run out on the field.” He was benched early in the game vs Syracuse only to be put back in to start the 2nd half. He was suspended for the first half of the NC State game.
It seems to me that it’s very hard to be the leader you need to be when you are constantly looking over your shoulder because you are too afraid to make a mistake. If your coaches don’t have, and show, confidence in you then how are you supposed to have confidence in yourself?
Do we blame Jawon, the coaches, the offensive line or Chane Behanan for the not so great play last season?
I think it’s a combo of all.
Regardless of how bad he played (1,960 yards, 8 touchdowns, 12 int), we still saw plays here and there that showed us why he was so heavily recruited and why he was the number 5 overall dual threat QB recruit.
Jawon Pass, 6’4″ 238 pounds, has all the size and tools to be a great quarterback. He just needs his confidence back.
I don’t know a ton about his new QB coach, Frank Ponce, but by all accounts, he is pretty good. No matter how good Ponce is or isn’t, it’s definitely an upgrade from the last few years – just sayin.
But Nunn, The only 2 games Louisville won Malik had to come in and save the day. He should be the starter.
I get it, and Malik is a game changer but he is not a passer. Malik may be the best athlete on the team. He was the leading rusher (497 yards on 79 attempts) last season. Without the threat to throw the ball downfield, defenses will load up and stop the run. The offense will die unless Malik can break off a long run but those runs from last season will be few and far between because defenses will be expecting it. I think Malik needs to be on the field but as a running back or a slot receiver. He needs to get touches but that’s a decision for coach Satterfield – he knows more about football than me.
Speaking of Satterfield, I believe he will get the most out of Jawon. I want to share this story with you. At the Spring Showcase, the rules for media were very relaxed. There may have been about 10-15 of us who braved the elements on that snowy evening. I was able to stand on the sideline with the team for a large part of the night. I happened to be near Coach Satterfield when Jawon made a bad pass that got intercepted. Jawon dropped his head and walked to the sideline like a kid who knew he did wrong and would be punished. Coach met Jawon a few yards from the sideline a put his arm around him. Not 1 obscenity came from coaches mouth nor did his body language show any anger. He just simply spoke words of encouragement. Coach basically comforted him and went through the play with Jawon and told him where he made his mistake and that it was Okay. Jawon smiled and had a little pep in his step as he headed back out to the field. I believe I witnessed the first step of not only a culture change but the revenge tour of Jawon Pass.
Jawon should have most of his confidence back by game one and with, hopefully a better offensive line that will give him time to throw the ball, we should see the Jawon we were hoping for last season. Coach Satterfield’s offense is not nearly as complex as Petrino’s so Jawon will not need to read defenses as much nor make calls at the line of scrimmage.
Will Jawon’s play equal more wins for this years Louisville team? I’m not sure but it can’t hurt.
I’m rooting for him and all of you should too. I’ve said it 1000 times, Jawon Pass gives Louisville the best chance to win and that is not debatable.
As Always, GO CARDS!