Ben McLane was named Georgia State’s starting quarterback today by coach Bill Curry.
“Ben McLane won the job, he earned it with his performance,” Curry said. “He completed a higher percentage of his passes, he learned the system better, he learned the checks better than the other two guys. He’s a remarkably reliable young man. He doesn’t miss classes, he doesn’t miss assignments. He trains hard in the weight room. He does all the things you expect of a leader.”
McLane, who will be a redshirt freshman in the fall, edged Kelton Hill, who started five games last year and was the presumed starter for the 2012 season, and Bo Schlechter. The Panthers wrapped up spring practices today with McLane going 10 of 13. One of the incompletions was a drop. He completed seven of 11 in last week’s scrimmage. Two of those incompletions were drops.
Offensive coordinator John Bond said last week that he wanted someone who could manage the game and give the receivers a chance in the team’s new no-huddle offense.
“Ben was the most consistent quarterback and the most accurate quarterback this spring,” Bond said. “In the offseason, he needs to continue to work hard on his game and he needs to continue to study the offense – all the things he’s been doing that have allowed him to play beyond his years.”
McLane led Brookwood High School to a state championship as a senior. He left as the school’s career passing leader with 4,747 yards and 35 touchdowns.
“By actual record, he is a champion,” Curry said. “He knows how it feels to go from a decent football team to a great football team, and that’s what we want to do.”
Hill passed for 1,021 yards and 11 touchdowns last season, but completed just 54 percent of his passes. Curry has said he wants the quarterback to complete at least 60 percent of their attempts. Hill adds a running dimension that McLane doesn’t. Hill, a native of Douglasville, was the team’s second-leading rusher with 609 yards last season.
“Bo and Kelton have things they do extremely well and when they increase consistency they can earn more playing time as well,” Curry said.
Georgia State will open the season on Aug. 30 against South Carolina State.
– Doug Roberson, AJC. Please follow me on twitter @ajcgsu