I am not sure were Robbi Pickeral is going with this one.
When he was asked Monday whether he'd try to work a back-up quarterback into Saturday's game against McNeese State, North Carolina coach Butch Davis said he didn't know. "We're just trying to get a first down,'' he said.
But considering what happened to N.C. State's starting quarterback Russell Wilson on Thursday night -- a concussion -- it will be interesting to see if UNC gives its back-up signal callers a few snaps late in the game, if the Tar Heels get a good cushion. Just in case.
First of all the question, if asked the way it is presented here, makes it sound like they are wondering if Davis will rotate either Sexton or Paulus in during the normal course of play. Davis decided to play coy with it, since his "coachspeak" mode is an automated response in his brain and he is unable to turn it off. The answer is a resounding "no, we will not be rotating QBs, Yates is the man." Then comes the "well look what happened to NCSU's starter, maybe Davis should give someone a shot if UNC is in control of the game." Um..okay...don't coaches generally sub in 2nd and 3rd team players when the game gets out of hand? Let me rephrase that. Don't coaches not named Bill Bellicheck and Steve Spurrier generally sub in 2nd and 3rd team players when the game gets out of hand? As far as I know they do and I would expect Davis to do the same here if UNC is up 20-30 points in the fourth quarter. As for the possibility of injury being a factor in whether Davis subs Sexton or Paulus in for Yates, I do not think it really factors in. Everyone knows the QB is one hit away from being out for the season so you do your best to get a back-up ready. And yes, putting them in at the end of a game is one of those ways.
So all of this is to say that if UNC is up big on McNeese State then there is a strong possibility he will put one of the backup QBs into the game since (1) it is generally the right thing to do when beating the crap out of your opponent and (2) every bit of game experience helps.
Pickeral does point out the larger question in this is whether it will be Sexton OR Paulus since Davis makes gratuitous use of the word "or" all over the depth chart in an effort to basically keep everyone in the dark about what his true rotation might actually be. For my money, I consider Sexton to be pretty much a lost cause at this point and would prefer to see if Paulus, despite his questionable familial relationships and general attitude, can live up to the hype that was bestowed upon him out of high school.