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April 17, 2011The winner of Saturday's quarterback competition?
Statistically speaking, Matt McGloin.
By throwing the only touchdown of the Blue White Game and being the only quarterback to pass for more 22 yards, the "West Scranton Gunslinger" improved on his five-interception Outback Bowl performance.
"I pretty much went into hiding after that," McGloin said. "But I won't lie, it made me a better player. I definitely learned from it and needed it. I never want to feel that way again."
McGloin was second out on the field Saturday after Rob Bolden opened the scrimmage by throwing an interception on the first play. McGloin proceeded to throw for 109 yards and complete five of his 10 attempts throughout the shortened Blue-White Game in comically bad weather conditions.
"I feel like today probably won't be taken into much consideration," McGloin said. "What will be are the last 14 practices we've had. Today was a fun day to show everyone what we have worked on."
Quarterbacks coach Jay Paterno stressed that the competition between McGloin and Bolden is on an equal level and has been beneficial to the young quarterbacks.
"Anytime you compete with somebody you can't take a day off," he said. "As a result, you've got to come out every day ready to practice and I think all those guys respond to that really, really well."
Bolden was unable to complete any passes after wet conditions forced several dropped passes in what amounted to a dreary overall performance. Despite this, he said he feels that he is in a fair position to grab the starting job this fall.
"I definitely have a fair shot at it," Bolden said "It's up for grabs and I'm ready to take it."
Head coach Joe Paterno maintained that he was content with his current quarterback situation and wasn't in a rush to name a starting man anytime soon.
"There's no sense to," Paterno said. "We don't have to. We didn't get outside and didn't get to do a lot of things we wanted to. I'm 99 percent sure it will be one of the two kids (McGloin or Bolden). Now which one starts - we'll sit down as a staff next week and spend some time looking at the tapes and discussing the different positions."
Paterno's comments quieted any speculation that either redshirt freshman Paul Jones or junior Kevin Newsome had much of a shot at the starting spot. Both saw minimal action Saturday; Newsome complete three of his seven passes for 22 yards and Jones was unable to complete his single pass attempt. Both were sacked.
"I don't know yet about Paul," Paterno said. "At times he's looked good, he's got a lot of ability. But the other two kids have been through it. They're just a little bit more aware of certain things."
Neither McGloin nor Bolden seemed bothered by the fact that their coaches were so reluctant to name a starter.
"It really doesn't matter to me," McGloin said. "It's not going to change my work ethic or how I go about the game."
"I don't think it would affect my decision (to stay or transfer)," Bolden said. "I made the decision to leave, I stayed, and now I need to talk with my family and decide."
In true Paterno fashion, he was adamant about sticking to naming a single starter instead of possibly utilizing both McGloin and Bolden in games.
"That's not my game," Paterno said. "We'll play the guy that we think is the best guy."