The USC quarterback controversy is over, at least for now. On Tuesday Steve Spurrier said he would start redshirt junior Stephen Garcia against Alabama next Saturday. Garcia’s job was in question after Spurrier benched him in favor of true freshman Connor Shaw late in the fourth quarter of last week’s loss to Auburn.
Spurrier pointed out that Garcia played “three quarters pretty well” last week and that “other than the fumbles he’s played pretty decently.” Spurrier, it seems is going to give Garcia another chance to improve his ball security issues.
For the past couple of days Spurrier has expressed genuine concern about Garcia‘s habit of running with his head down during games. This, Spurrier said, is a recipe for disaster. It’s not the fumbles that worry the Head Ball Coach, but the risk of a serious spinal cord or neck injury. A player is taught to always run with his head up or to only tackle what he can see.
So serious about his concern, Spurrier said he will stop playing Garcia if he doesn’t change the habit.
“I told Stephen I am going to have a tough time letting him play if he ducks his head like that,” Spurrier said Tuesday. “Because that’s how serious injuries occur. He tells me he can play without doing that. He must do that or we are going to take him out so he can avoid injury to himself. Heck, I am afraid they could sue me if I let him play like that.”