September 11, 2013

Terry 'threw the ball very well' in Tuesday's practice

EAST LANSING - When fans chanted Damion Terry's name during Saturday's victory over South Florida, Spartan supporters weren't aware that the freshman quarterback was unavailable to play.

Terry had missed the practice week with a thumb injury and strep throat. Terry suited up and participated in pre-game warm-ups, but he wasn't going to see the field, regardless of the score.

Media learned on Tuesday that Terry also missed more than a week, maybe two, earlier in August with a hand ailment.

MSU also revealed that Terry is Michigan State's new No. 2 quarterback heading into the remainder of practice, prior to this Saturday's game against Youngstown State (2 p.m., BTN).

Coaches have wanted to give Terry a chance to work more extensively with the first- or second-string in practice earlier this season, and perhaps in a game. But getting him involved in a workable number of healthy practices has been a challenge.

"He was limited in fall camp and limited the last couple of weeks," quarterbacks coach Brad Salem said. "We have limited information with him, because of his setbacks in fall camp, missing some days, unable to take some snaps.

"But he is a guy who soaks stuff in."

That was apparent during Terry's surprisingly outstanding performance during the final Jersey Scrimmage of fall camp on Aug. 17. That was the day Mark Dantonio elevated a suddenly-hot Terry from third string, to second and then first string.

All four QBs later conceded that Terry was the best quarterback on that particular day.

But coaches haven't seen a full dose of Terry since then.

"We saw him on the one scrimmage we had, and then that week after, and then we haven't really seen anything until today," Salem said on Tuesday. "But you see flashes. Can that flash be a consistency?"

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