Print and Go Back ESPN.com: NCF Nation [Print without images]

Thursday, November 8, 2012
GT, UVa using two QBs -- with success

By Andrea Adelson

You know that old football cliche: If you have two quarterbacks, that means you have no quarterbacks.

Well, that did not really apply to Georgia Tech and Virginia last week.

Both teams rotated in two quarterbacks with success, and both ended up winning their respective games -- Georgia Tech over Maryland and Virginia over NC State to snap a six-game losing streak. They have no plans to scrap their plans, either.

Virginia's Mike London
"There's not an ego between Michael (Rocco) or Phillip (Sims)," Virginia coach Mike London said.
Georgia Tech coach Paul Johnson will play Tevin Washington and Vad Lee this week against North Carolina; Virginia coach Mike London will play Phillip Sims and Michael Rocco this week against Miami.

So why did the multiple quarterback system work so well when it has failed so many times before?

"We've been down the ‘try this guy’, ‘try that guy’ approach, and it got to the point where both of them have talent," London explained this week. "Both of them are selfless. They're both guys that actually like each other. Some people think that guys are adversaries because of it. But they split reps in practice, and it's allowed us to do some things offensively to take advantage of those skill sets that they have.

"They both have bought into it. There's not an ego between Michael or Phillip. We have to get the job done when we do this. We will win. That's all that matters to them."

The way London used his quarterbacks against NC State was much more of a surprise than what Georgia Tech did. First, the Jackets have used Lee at various points throughout the season. Second, Johnson said going into the game against Maryland last week he would play Washington and Lee extensively. But Lee saw his most extensive game action of the season, as the Jackets rotated quarterbacks every couple of series.

Lee ended up getting one more series than Washington, a first this season.

"I thought they both did some positive things," Johnson said. "We plan on probably going that route again this week. I don't know how much we'll use each one, but I feel reasonably sure they're both going to play."

At Virginia, the best stat of all for Sims and Rocco was a bit fat zero next to the interceptions column. Virginia has struggled all year holding onto the football. But that game was the first time since the opener against Richmond that the Hoos did not throw an interception. Sims finished 8-of-10 for 115 yards and a touchdown; Rocco went 12-of-23 for 83 yards and another score.

Now we will see if the two-quarterback system works again Saturday.