I guess we could kind of see this one coming? Initially reported as a lower leg bruise, contusion, whatever, suffered a week-and-a-half ago, JT Levenseller was thought to be cool with being on crutches for a few days, then ready to mount up and get back at it. Well, not so fast.
RIPPED from Grippi's scrimmage recap today is this little nugget:
Wagner and Lopina split all the snaps – Wagner finished 1 of 4, Lopina 4 of 6 – because J.T. Levenseller’s bruised knee turned out to be more than that.
Levenseller had been on crutches for a week, wasn’t getting better, so the WSU training staff had more imaging done this week. The diagnosis: a small fracture at the top of his tibia. He’ll be off the leg for 4-to-6 weeks.
So let's see - the top two QB's on the roster, based on everything you read or hear or have even witnessed, are either 1) coming off a major knee injury and is limited in what he can do, or 2) now done for a while in Levenseller. Wonderful!
Now let's keep perspective. In ALL LIKELIHOOD of course, the injuries will sort themselves out by August. At least they are supposed to be a thing of the past by August. Lobbestael is moving and working hard in skeleton drills, and looked good doing it when we checked in on them 10 days ago. So that's cool. And Levy's deal with the small fracture might be just as described - SMALL - and a month or so of staying off the leg will leave him with plenty of time to heal before fall camp.
But man, can we PLEASE catch a break with our QB situation? Everyone we hear from wants to see one of those two guys take the reins this fall, complete with the dynamic, no-huddle offensive scheme in their back pocket. No offense to Kevin Lopina or Dan Wagner, but for the future of the program, Levy and Lobbestael need to be 1-2 on the depth chart. Most of all, they need to get as many friggin' reps as possible, in every conceivable situation! Games, practice, skeleton drills, it doesn't matter how, they just need the work.
The disappointing thing about this spring though is that neither of those guys are going to get meaningful scrimmage-type reps. Sure, Lobbestael's seven-on-seven time is valuable, allowing him to take his drops, make his reads, and deliver the ball when and where it needs to go. But it's obviously not the same thing as getting under center and dropping back with a pass rush in your face. There's just no other way to say it, reps, reps, REPS are the only experiences that will make the young QB's better. And right now, it's just not happening.
At least the running backs sounded good. All three guys - Dwight Tardy, Logwone Mitz and James Montgomery - each had their moments.
The official WSU site has this recap, including stats. If you are too lazy to follow the links, just know that Tardy looked good, Mitz was physical, and Montgomery had the run of the day with a big-time juke for a long TD run.
Oh, and the o-line sounded more aggressive. And there was even a FIGHT! Wow. WE LIKE THAT. And hey, if the QB's are the walking wounded again by this fall, ala 2K8, and we're back to running it 45 times a game again? At least they COULD be a little more equipped to make that work with the added dose of nasty...maybe?!?
UGH. Well, whatever. It's just spring football, right? Long way to go until it's really nervous time. For now, it's all about health and improvement. We'll have second helpings of both, PLEASE!?!
ENJOY WHAT'S LEFT OF YOUR HOLIDAY WEEKEND, and as always, GO COUGS!