Elliott officially names Tony Muskett as starting quarterback
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (CBS19 SPORTS)-- Run, don't walk, to Mincers and get yourself a number 11 jersey before they sell out because the Tony Muskett era is officially here. Tony Elliott formally announced Muskett as starting quarterback Monday afternoon at the conclusion of fall training camp.
"Tony Muskett will be our starting quarterback," said head coach Tony Elliott.
After transferring from Monmouth in January Muskett entered as the favorite to start out under center. This popular belief was only further cemented when backup quarterback Jay Woolfolk pulled out of football to focus on baseball. Even as the quarterback room thinned out, Elliott remained tight-lipped about naming a starter, instead opting to allow competition between Muskett and freshman Anthony Colandrea.
"Colandrea he battled all the way to the end," said Elliott, "Really excited about the development and the progress that he made, but Tony had a great week last week and I challenged him to show me some of the true leadership things that I know that he has he's a lot more vocal took a lot more command of it."
"Just his innate leadership right? Like guys migrate to him," said offensive coordinator Des Kitchings, "Guys migrate to Colandrea, when Jay was on the team guys migrate to him that's what you want to see out of your quarterback. They really really like the guys. Then we get to training camp and Muskett was continually consistent every day, through 15 practices that's a great accomplishment for him and you know taking care of the football, finding completions in the passing game, and getting us into the right check if necessary. So he's checked the boxes in all those things."
Muskett starting under center doesn't come as a huge surprise, but Colandrea did give everyone a run for their money as he 'pushed' Muskett throughout fall camp. Both Elliott and offensive coordinator Des Kitchings were impressed with the Florida native's fight all throughout spring practice and fall camp, citing his continued growth. Elliott remained optimistic about the backup quarterback's future as he brings 'moxie' and 'young puppy' energy to the table.
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While we do get an answer on who will start under center, not all the questions of fall camp will be revealed. Tony Elliott remains unclear on when defensive end Chico Bennett will return to play after suffering a non-contact injury. Bennett sat out of practice last week on crutches. On Monday the All-ACC defensive end was only seen sporting a brace.