One of the biggest unresolved quarterback battles ahead of the college football season is going down in Happy Valley. Sean Clifford is the solid favorite to take over for Trace McSorley, now a Baltimore Raven, while Will Levis is serving as the primary challenger.
Tommy Stevens was the one who most pointed to as McSorley’s likely successor. However, things took a turn when Stevens missed the spring due to injury.
Because it was unclear that he’d be able to beat out Clifford, Stevens opted to transfer for his final college season instead. The Penn State graduate is now one of the favorites to start at Mississippi State, under former Penn State OC Joe Moorhead.
McSorley, perhaps the best quarterback that Penn State has had, leaves behind big shoes to fill. After a Monday practice, which also featured former Penn State RB Miles Sanders and the Philadelphia Eagles, he shared his thoughts on Clifford and Levis, and the direction of the QB battle.
From the Centre Daily Times:
“From Sean, I think I just go back to the approach he’s taken every single day since he arrived on campus. Really businesslike, very competitive, very hungry. And as he’s gone on through this year especially, I think he’s had a little bit of a chip on his shoulder with people saying this and that about him.
“Whether it’s right or wrong or different, I think it’s something that’s going to drive them to be better. He wants to lead this team and take them to good places. Honestly, I’d say the same thing about Will Levis. They’re both really good athletes and can throw the ball really well so, whoever ends up being in that (starting) spot, I think it’d be pretty good.”
Based on the answer, I don’t think it’s a stretch to say that Trace McSorley, like most, expects Clifford to be the guy when August 31 rolls around. Still, James Franklin has played things very close to the vest, and has said good things about Levis all off-season.
While most programs have made decisions, with many coming over the last few days, we may have to get a bit closer to the season opener against Idaho before Franklin makes an announcement about his team’s next QB1.