30Q-2-KICKOFF (No. 25): QB Battle on Winton Dr.

For the first time in nearly five years, De La Salle enters its season without an established quarterback. With Blake Wayne now lining up behind center at Diablo Valley College, the Spartans went into this summer with three players competing for the right to gain the keys to the offense. So after speaking with a member of the coaching staff and watching two-thirds of the team’s scrimmage at Pittsburg on Friday, I think I’m now prepared to answer today’s question.

Who will play QB for De La Salle in 2009? 

First let’s introduce you to the cast.
Travis Pacos (Junior) — Spent the all of 2008 as the primary backup to Blake Wayne, which gives him the most varsity experience of any of three.
Scott Herting (Junior) — Spent most of 2008 as the JV quarterback before being called up to the varsity for the postseason. He ended up receiving a limited amount of action in two lopsided playoff games.
Bart Houston (Sophomore) — Spent 2008 as the freshman quarterback.

In an Aug. 22 conversation with a member of the De La Salle coaching staff, I was basically told that none of the three players had truly separated themselves from the pack. Nearly every practice they would see a different QB play best. However, the coach did believe that whoever ended up winning the job would have to hold onto it, because there wouldn’t be much hesitation in giving one of the other kids a shot.

One week later, I watched all three get into action in scrimmage sets against California and Pittsburg. I don’t think there was any question which QB shined the most at the scrimmage. That was Pacos. He was the best of the three in running the football out of the veer (he rushed for scores against both Cal and Pittsburg), and the offense seemed to move best when he was behind center. I didn’t chart passes, but I’d also estimate that he had the best completion percentage of the three. He was something close to 5-for-5 against Cal. I would be surprised if Pacos is not the first QB to play against Serra-San Mateo this coming Friday night.

Here are a few notes that I had on the other two quarterbacks, who certainly didn’t embarrass themselves.

Herting did some good things, leading the team on a couple of scoring drives. Unfortunately, some of his best passes of the night were dropped by the receiver.

As for Houston, it’s clear that he has the strongest arm of the three. His hitch passes had some real zip on them, and his throwing motion on the deep ball appears effortless. He was the quarterback who ran the least. I did notice a solid option run against Pitt’s second team defense. However, after gaining about five yards he chose to pitch the ball to the tailback, but the tailback couldn’t secure it.

If you’re thinking this may be ripe for a redux of a shared position like how Mike MacGillivray and Wayne were used in 2007, think again. While it hasn’t been ruled out completely, the coaches would like to have just one guy running the show.

Chace Bryson

  • 925

    can’t be that hard, they’ll be running the ball a lot more. as long as they don’t botch handoffs to ward

  • Prep Fan

    Pacos was clearly the best QB they had in there yesterday at the jamboree with Pitt, Cal and Logan.

  • Wow, in case you missed it.
    Dougherty Valley crushed Irvington in a scrimmage on Friday night. Dougherty Valley lierally man-handled Irvington.

  • the truth

    Dv is a joke, the played almost all the weakest teams in the whole bay area last year, they played an D+ in ferdale and got man handled, if my pop warner team played maroe hayward, and richmond. And mission san jose we will win, plus a lost to dublin? How much better has DV gotten,? Like pleaseee with all that non sense I don’t wanna hear about a jv team that plays a bunch of nobodies

  • the truth

    Excuse me I meant a D+ team in ferndale

  • DV

    what the hell is D+? learn how to type dip, i guarantee you we’re going to not finish last in a down dfal like freakin acalanes

  • DV

    also, we’re DIII, so just because your team sucked or didnt make the playoffs in their division, talk all you want. we’ve had a good beginning, our coach used to coach irvington, like when irvington beat logan in 05. we’ve got good coaches and maybe you’re just sour because you went to irvington or one of those ‘nobody’ schools. there are no ‘nobody’ schools, only ‘no bodies’ like you B

  • I do agree with The Truth. Irvington is a nobody. Rather than go with a real coach this year, they sold the position to the highest bidder this year. He got the job by offering to pay off the past debt of the football team. And what a coincidence, all the coaches are previous youth football coaches. I doubt any of them actually played youth football, let alone high school football.

  • Prep Fan

    How did this DLS article turn into a discussion about Dougherty Valley?