Monday, August 07, 2006

The Beck Saga Ends

Harrison Beck received a release from his scholarship, thus ending the latest drama in the Nebraska football program. In the end, this is probably best for all parties; too many bridges have been burned in this situation.

However, this end isn't a win-win; it's really a lose-lose situation for everyone. All of the principals deserve a share of the blame in this situation. In order of increasing responsibility:

Bill Callahan: There is an unwritten rule in sports that you don't lose your position due to injury. Callahan has violated this rule twice with his quarterbacks in the 16 months. Joe Dailey was demoted from 1st string to 4th string after tweaking his shoulder in Spring 2005, and Beck found himself demoted to 4th string to open pre-season practice. Both situations ended within days with the player leaving.

Evelyn Beck-Bothwell's criticism that coaches weren't spending enough time with lower string players also shouldn't be dismissed completely. We heard this criticism last year, and Callahan changed the practice schedule to devote a practice day to the lower units each week. I do wonder if the development of younger players played an impact in Josh Freeman's switch to Kansas State.

Speaking of Freeman, that drama queen comment sure sounds awfully ironic a few months later.

Evelyn Beck-Bothwell: Standing up for your child is a natural response, but at a certain point, you've got to let go and let your son resolve his own mistakes. Especially when Mom only makes the situation worse. Your boy Harrison is an adult now, let him speak for himself.

Harrison Beck: In the end, the player itself is responsible for his actions. Skipping practice is counterproductive. Your Rivals rating isn't an automatic ticket to stardom. Hopefully, you've learned a hard lesson in your time in Lincoln. Last week, it sounded like Cody Glenn saw some progress on this front. You'll need to work extra-hard to live down the reputation you earned in Lincoln.

So what does this mean for 2006? This season, not much except that protecting Zac Taylor becomes even more important with even less depth at quarterback. That means that the #1 IB will likely be the best at picking up blitzes, not necessarily who is the best rusher.

2007 is another story. With Taylor being a senior, the need for quarterback depth becomes the #1 priority. Look for a strong push for at least 1 JuCo quarterback. And don't discount commit Patrick Witt either. I remember hearing a radio interview with Harrison Beck during the summer before his senior year, and I was immediately concerned about his maturity then. My concerns were warranted in the end. I heard an interview with Witt last month, and came away with the opposite impression.

I heard a report that Callahan might be looking for a JuCo quarterback to come to Lincoln immediately, which could be a huge mistake. I understand the need to build depth, but you don't want to waste a scholarship for 2 or 3 years in desperation. At this late date, any JuCo quarterback still available for this season is unlikely to be more proficient this season than Joe Ganz, Beau Davis, or Jordan Adams. Better off to look to the JuCo ranks for next season, preferably if they are available for spring practice. If those same players are available now, give it a try now.


Stearns1723 said...

Thats hilarous! How can someone be 4th string when a depth chart hasnt even been released yet? Harrison was splitting time with Joe Ganz on the second team. There is no excuse to quitting the team due to a demotion when its only the third practice. He had plenty of time to solidify the #2 spot on the depth chart. Fact is, he didnt want to be #2, he thought he should start. And thats just nuts. Good riddance Mr Beck!

Husker Mike said...

The "4th string" quote came from Beck's mother. However, Callahan's refusal to issue a depth chart leads to misunderstandings of this sort. In the best case scenario, Beck was the 3rd quarterback to practice -- which implies a demotion.

b_dunn2003 said...

As a parent to a HS QB (who started as a 5'8 155lb Freshman Class A) there is a fine line in what I say to my son. I have ALWAYS told him that he has to work harder than everyone else to stay on the field. I NEVER discuss how good or bad someone ELSE is. If he starts then it was due to his hard work in the off season and on the field. Beck's Mother was ABSOLUTELY wrong in her comments to the Lincoln paper. Did she think that was going to get her son BACK on the field. Listen to his teammates. One of them said that he "jacked around" a lot last season and he needed to get focused. He should've waited to come to NU in the fall after his senior season. This is where I feel BC failed, allowing a 17 year old to come early.

AJ said...

The fact that Husker fans are relentlessly bashing this kid (and his mom) speaks volumes about the "classiest fans in the nation."

Really..he was an elite 11 QB. He's been told he was great since he could walk. Did you really think you could promise him the world (thanks John Blake) and NOT have something like this happen?

Welcome to the world of recruiting elite players. This may only be the beginning.

Stearns1723 said...

I would love to see one example in college football where a depth chart is released on the first day of August. Please show me.

b_dunn2003 said...

I think as far a an "official" depth chart is concerned...I think it had more to do with how many reps Beck was getting in practice. Maybe his perception was that he wasn't getting any love from the coaches. There are very few HS players that play right away at the college level, especially at such a high profile position as QB. If you look at Beck's overall recruiting class (as I heard on the radio)there is only one of those QB's that start right now. As far as bashing Beck's Mom, I still think she should keep her yap shut and let her son (that she was willing to let go at the tender age of 17) work things out for himself.

48inilli said...

"aj" is not a Husker fan but a Husker Hater! His comments appear reasonable but read them again and it's all about mind games and talkin' smack. Husker mike, you need to "Putin" this guy and don't allow him to be published on your blog.

Husker Mike said...

Actually, AJ is a Husker "H8er". But eerily, he actually knows more about the Huskers than some fans. (Which makes me wonder if he's really a closet fan! :-)

But this isn't the Pinnacle network, so I'll let anybody post as long as they are reasonable and don't abuse the priviledge.