New Mexico State Aggie head football coach DeWayne Walker said he expected quarterback Matt Christian to play on Saturday at Hawaii and for freshman Travaughn Colwell to get playing time as well.
Christian injured his left shoulder last week but is ready to go on Saturday.
“Yes, for sure,” Walker said when asked if both players will see action against Hawaii. “We’ve got to find a way to take hits off Matt and....(Colwell) proved last week that the game’s not too big for him. We’ll continue to manage him and protect Matt as much as we can.”
Walker added that tight end Trevor Walls — who played quarterback for the Aggies in 2009 — is next in line behind Colwell on the depth chart.
Speaking of quarterbacks, here are some comments from wide receiver Kemonte Bateman regarding both QBs — most specifically Colwell — during Tuesday’s press conference. Found them interesting....
On Colwell’s performance
“Honestly, when he first came in I was, like, jittery. But like coach Walker said, we’ve got to gather around him and let him know ‘we got your back.’ Even in the huddle, we would talk, but he was kind of nervous. He finally put his foot down and told us, ‘just be quite. I’ve got this. Just make sure you’ve got my back.’ We all told him, ‘we got you. Just play your game.’ First series he was kind of nervous. Just told him to calm down, just go through the reads. I guess one of the defensive players got to him and he just turned into a whole different player, just started playing ball. Everything just settled down for the offense.”
Did that help your confidence when you saw he was more confident?
“Actually it did. They didn’t think he could pass. But they also couldn’t send the blitz because of the tempo we have in our offense, that kind of helped as well. Once they found out he could pass, and they think he can run, they have to respect him. No doubt. Once he saw that, he took advantage.”
The difference of when Christian’s in the game as opposed to Colwell
“Matt takes his time and actually goes through the defense. That’s something Tra has to do and we tell him all the time. Even in practice, he rushes the cadence and he thinks he goes through the defense. There were a few plays in the game where he was supposed to audible, or flip the play or what not. It happens. He’s a freshman. That’s a correction we’re going to make over this week.”
Does he have less leeway than Christian to change the play?
“He has actually has the leeway to make the changes.”
Does he not recognize when to make the change?
“He recognizes it, it’s just that he’s a freshman. He was just happy to be out there playing. He knows when to audible or not. He does it every time in practice. It was just the first, actual game for him that he had to take control of.”
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