Bobby Hauck confident in quarterbacks battling for starting spot

MISSOULA – It’s no surprise which position is drawing the most attention during the Montana Grizzlies’ fall camp. When Gresch Jensen left the program after spring practice, he left Montana without a single quarterback who has thrown a pass at UM.

But the new guys are coming together and hoping to give Griz fans the answer they want to hear.

Head coach Bobby Hauck has not named a starting quarterback. But that doesn’t mean he dislikes his options.

“First of all, we’ll always have a competition at every position here,” said Hauck. “Every day is a competition here. And then second, quarterback is the least of our worries.”

The guys hoping to win the job don’t mind the battle.

“Competition is great,” added junior Dalton Sneed. “Coach Rosey (offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Timm Rosenbach) always tells us, ‘Musketeer mentality.’ So all for one, one for all. And that’s truly how it is in the quarterback room. It’s the best quarterback room I’ve ever been in.”

We haven’t seen the Grizzlies’ six options in a game, but Sneed’s experience has him in front of the race. The 6-foot-1 former UNLV and junior college player has taken a leadership role, and the junior got a head start on the race back in March.

“He had a really good spring practice,” Hauck said of the Scottsdale, Ariz. product the coach originally recruited his last year at UNLV. “He’s doing a lot of good things. He did a nice job in the summer with the team. He’s ahead. There’s no way for those other guys to combat that other than trying to catch up.”

Montana brought in a couple other transfers to help add depth to the position. Cam Humphrey and Wheeler Harris are interesting options for now and the future. Humphrey redshirted at Boise State before going to junior college in 2017.

“When I was at JuCo last year I was kind of down at the bottom looking up,” said Humphrey, 6-2 native of Issaquah, Wash. “And when I heard about the opportunity I had here at such an amazing program, it was hard for me to turn down.”

Harris signed up for the Grizzlies without ever setting foot in Montana. The freshman spent last season redshirting for the Alabama Crimson Tide. And the Mesa, Ariz. native witnessed a QB change in the national championship that gives a perfect example of the camaraderie the Grizzlies want.

“Seeing Tua (Tagovailoa) going in and Jalen (Hurts) still supporting, that’s kind of the mindset everyone needs to have in the QB room,” said Harris. “Just always supporting. Even if you get taken out, always be supportive.”

Hauck says he is impressed with the way Humphrey and Harris can throw the ball. Now he needs to see if they can make the right decisions running the offense.

Sneed remains the heavy favorite to start when Montana kicks off the season versus Northern Iowa on Sept. 1.

Derek Buerkle

Derek Buerkle

Derek has worked in sports at KPAX-TV in Missoula since 2007. He grew up in Big Timber, Montana, and attended the University of Montana journalism program.
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