Tuesday, October 15, 2002

Bearcats' quarterback situation unsettled

Guidugli injury clouds picture

By Dustin Dow
The Cincinnati Enquirer

University of Cincinnati football coach Rick Minter wants to know by Wednesday whether the Bearcats' starting quarterback will be Gino Guidugli or George Murray for Saturday's 2 p.m. game at Southern Miss.

If Guidugli hasn't recovered from bone bruises below his left knee suffered last Saturday against Tulane, Minter said he is prepared to go with Murray, an athletic, speed-style quarterback.

"(Guidugli) is doubtful for the next couple of days," Minter said. "We're just going to let him stay off of it. We're obviously better with Gino Guidugli on the field, but we might be dangerous to an opponent without him on the field. We're willing the first couple days (of practice) here to give the other kids some work and be prepared to go if that's the case."

Like Guidugli, Murray is a sophomore, but he has just four pass attempts and two completions this season. Last season, he completed 8 of 14 passes for 130 yards and one touchdown. Murray actually signed with UC several months before Guidugli, and Murray was pegged to compete for the starting job until Guidugli won it.

"We already had George (when Guidugli signed) and felt very good about his ability," Minter said. "Keep in mind the offense was tailored around, initially, a kid of George's ability. That's the way our offense was structured - razzle-dazzle, running quarterback."

Guidugli entered the picture late in the spring of 2001, became a starter his freshman year and earned Conference USA Freshman of the Year honors.

Meanwhile, Minter didn't want to waste Murray's athleticism, so he rotated Murray into the receiving corps, where he has 13 catches this season for 118 yards and one touchdown. But in practice, he has always remained a quarterback.

"(Murray) has been our second quarterback from Day One," Minter said. "He works at quarterback everyday in practice. He never works with the wide receiver coach."

If Murray does start at quarterback against Southern Miss Saturday, UC's offense could take on a different style, especially out of the shotgun. Murray showed his run-pass potential last season in the second half against East Carolina, when he came off of the bench to rush 21 times for 54 yards and complete six passes for 86 yards.

"If you operate in a shotgun offense, your quarterback carrying the ball, and the threat of your quarterback carrying the ball has to be present to the defense," Minter said.

That's something Murray gives the Bearcats that Guidugli doesn't.

"We don't want to make a ton of plays with (Guidugli) running the football," Minter said. "When (Guidugli) is back there, we don't want him doing those things. We don't need him doing those things. He gets hit enough as it is."

E-mail: ddow@enquirer.com

Spikes sounds off
LeBeau: I'm going to work my tail off
Westbrook exits after declared as inactive
MNF: 49ers 28, Seahawks 21
Two longtime laughingstocks surging toward the Super Bowl
Broken thumb benches Dolphins QB Fiedler
Fan balloting for Pro Bowl begins Tuesday
Davis goes on defensive after loss
Bearcats' Barker smiles all the way
Ex-UC player Little goes on trial for roommate assault
Bearcats' quarterback situation unsettled
Southern Miss suspends starting tackle
Mistakes at critical times costing Cats
Smith looking forward to rare Saturday game
Grossman's Florida QB job at risk
Lazier returns, looking to 2003
Blue Jackets drop penalty-filled game
Cavs' Ilgauskas suspended one game
Tennis Hall dedicated tonight
Payroll jump only a bump?
Giants 2, Cardinals 1
Lack of clutch hitting dooms Cardinals
Eisner lauds Anaheim's 'Disneyesque' finish
It's all set: Giants vs. Angels in World Series
M's allow teams to talk with Lou
Unbeaten neighbors gird for gridiron
Lakota West ties Lakota East 1-1, but reaps rewards
Purcell Marian opens sectional soccer with win
High school polls
High school results, schedule

Mail This Story (Click here) Send this story to a friend.

vs. South Florida (3-4)
• 1:00 p.m. Sat. Nov. 20
• Nippert Stadium
• Radio: WLW-AM 700


Paterno Won't Coach Penn St.-Temple Game

Paterno Won't Go to Penn St.-Temple Game

Spurrier Shadow Looms Large in Florida

No. 15 Rutgers Bracing for Historic Game

Hurricanes Stunned by Teammate's Murder

Big East logo
UC joins Big East
• A special section of complete coverage, as the UC Bearcats join one of the nation's elite sports conferences.


Terps Sign Gary Williams Through 2010-11

Bob Knight Approaches Winning Milestone

Buckeyes' Oden Content to Wait for NBA

Larranaga Enjoy Spoils of Final Four Run

Hansbrough Leads AP's All-America Team

AP's Preseason All-America Team

Gators Runaway Preseason No. 1 in Poll

Gators Return Starters to Defend Title

Texas Tech's Jackson Returns to Practice

Sutton Released From Hospital in Okla.


Paris Headlines AP's All-America Team

ACC New Powerhouse in Women's Basketball

Maryland Tops AP Women's Basketball Poll