Urban Meyer makes quarterback switch
With the words “J.T. Barrett has earned the right to start with the way he played Saturday,” Urban Meyer made the switch many have been calling for since August.
Barrett will replace Cardale Jones at quarterback on Saturday against Rutgers. Why was the move made?
“Just sheer production,” Meyer said on Tuesday. “Cardale is going to be a very active part. Hopefully we’ll keep him very much involved. It was a difficult decision, but the red-zone production and third-down production were the two areas that made the difference. [Barrett] earned that with the way he played Saturday.”
Barrett, of course, stole the show on Saturday night with four touchdowns, two of which were rushing. Initially just the red-zone quarterback, the sophomore came into the game for good in the second half.
When Barrett takes the field on Saturday, it’ll be the first time he’ll get the opening snap since he was injured in the regular season finale last year against Michigan. Last year’s B1G Offensive Player of the Year finished fifth in the Heisman voting as a redshirt freshman.
Meyer has repeatedly said that the decision to stick with Jones was because Barrett had not won the job in camp. Jones was the one who pioneered the postseason run and that the job was his until Barrett took it.
But Barrett has been the catalyst for the Buckeyes the last two weeks. He’s coming off two games in which he’s completed all six of his passes for two touchdowns to go along with his 164 rushing yards and four touchdowns.
Jones, on the other hand, has only three rushing yards in those contests.
Meyer did say that it isn’t necessarily benching Jones for good, and that he could still crack the rotation.
“Whether it’s doing what J.T. did as far as keeping and staying into the game, coaching J.T., I expect Cardale will be very similar in his role as J.T,” Meyer said. “Now, not necessarily in the red zone, we’ll make those decisions and see how he practices this week.”