Coach Sonny Dykes said after practice Wednesday he probably won’t name a starting quarterback until Friday, and didn’t say whether that information would become public at that point.
Dykes also said the moves made along the offensive line are not short-term fixes but expected to be permanent position changes.
Freshman Jared Goff, the starter for seven games, and redshirt freshman Zach Kline continued to share first-team reps Wednesday in preparation for Saturday night’s game at Washington.
The coach will meet with reporters, as usual, after Thursday’s closed practice, but it didn’t sound like a decision on the starting quarterback would be forthcoming by then.
Dykes said he is not entertaining the notion of playing both Goff and Kline on Saturday.
“It’s not what we want to do,” he said. “Typically, we want to play somebody, let him get a feel for the game, let him go. The last thing we want to do is somebody gets into a flow and another quarterback comes in. I’ve never found that to be particularly effective.”
There is less mystery along the offensive line, where sophomore Jordan Rigsbee has been moved from left guard to center, freshman Chris Borrayo is being pulled out of his redshirt year to play left guard, and tackle Freddie Tagaloa is being shifted from left tackle to right guard.
Dykes also said redshirt freshman guard Matt Cochran, sidelined the past four games because of ankle surgery, could be ready to return by next week’s home game against Arizona.
Asked about the offensive line shuffling, Dykes said, “Just trying to find some things that work. We think it’s a way to get some guys in positions we think they can excel in.
“They’re long-term moves as well. We’re going to develop those guys at those positions — all of them. They’ll stay there for the forseeable future.”
Rigsbee is being moved to center, where senior Chris Adcock started the first four games before tearing knee ligaments in practice. Senior Mark Brazinski has started the past three games.
“We think Rigsbee has a chance to be the center for a long time,” Dykes said. “He’s probably the most consistent guy. If he can hold down that center position, I think it will allow us to develop some other players.”
One of those guys is Borrayo, who hasn’t played the first seven games, but has been on the coaching staff’s radar. Dykes said the key with Borrayo is that he isn’t having his redshirt season burned to serve in a minor role.
“It’s something we’ve been talking about for a while. Since he’s going to be a starter and we’re playing five important ballgames the next five weeks, we think it’s a good move,” Dykes said.
Tagaloa, at 6-foot-8, 330 pounds, was touted out of Salesian High as a star on the rise at offensive tackle. But he’s been less consistent than the coaching staff hoped and has had trouble containing quick defenders on the edge.
“His strength is not playing in space. It’s playing in a little bit more confined space,” Dykes said. “The guard position allows him to do that. It lets him be more aggressive, lets him be less of a finesse player.
“I think the move makes sense. I think he’ll develop into a fabulous player, I really do.”
Dykes said it hasn’t been decided whether Tagaloa or Alejandro Crosthwaite — who replaced Cochran — will start on Saturday. The equation could get especially complicated when Cochran returns to the mix.
For now, anyway, the starting O-line appears to be: LT Christian Okafor, LG Chris Borrayo, C Jordan Rigsbee, RG Alejandro Crosthwaite/Freddie Tagloa, RT Steven Moore.
If Tagaloa gets the call, we’re talking two sophomores, two redshirt freshmen and one true freshman.