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CMU coaches speak on quarterbacks: 'We treat all three like they're our starter'


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Offensive coordinator Charlie Frye guiding the Central Michigan offense at Sept. 3 practice at the East Grass Field.

Offensive coordinator Charlie Frye has a good poker face. 

Meeting with reporters via Webex on Oct. 15, Frye offered his opinions on the efforts of each of Central Michigan's three competitors at quarterback but wouldn't announce the lead horse in the race. 

Not naming a starter means that senior David Moore, junior Ty Brock and redshirt freshman Daniel Richardson are still on an equal playing field as the Chippewas approach the end of fall camp. 

"They’ve all been getting reps and we continue to develop all three guys and we treat all three, every one of them, like they’re starters," Frye said. "That’s the expectation and that’s what going to help them go out and perform when their number’s called."

Richardson was the first to be mentioned by Frye. The two worked closely last season, with the true freshman standing at Frye's side and relaying the coordinator's play calls to starter Quinten Dormady. Now, one year later, Frye has watched Richardson develop into a quarterback ready to take the reigns of the offense. 

"He had a really good spring ball, was getting completions and doing a good job of running his unit, getting guys lined up, playing with tempo, showing the leadership capabilities that it takes to play the position," Frye said. "He’s gotten a lot better in the 18 months that he’s been here. You can see the progress and the development, the confidence which he’s playing with." 

In spring ball, with Moore suspended and Dormady graduated, Richardson was named the starter. However, with the postponement of the season, Moore has re-entered the conversation as a potential starter. Moore's one-year suspension for an NCAA banned substance was up on Oct. 7. 

Last season, Moore played six games, starting four in the absence of an injured Quinten Dormady. The announcement of his suspension aligned with Dormady's return from injury, so whether or not he replaced Dormady as the team's starter last year will forever be up in the air. 

"I think his understanding, his knowledge, the way he handles the operation of the offense is ahead, only because of experience," coach Jim McElwain said. 

There's also Brock, who came to CMU from Sam Houston State early in April. Unable to get to campus until June, Brock has spent time playing catch-up. However, Frye is still pleased with what he's seen from the graduate transfer. 

"He got here this summer and he really worked his ass off this summer, doing the things that it takes to come in here and compete with the other two guys," Frye said. 

As a dual-threat quarterback, Brock has elements to his game that resemble what Tommy Lazzaro was able to bring to the Chippewa offense last season. He's behind from a familiarity standpoint, but the nuances he's able to bring to the offense in both the pass and run game make him valuable. 

"(Brock) is also able to do some things that the others can't do with his feet," McElwain said. "He gives us very unique options when he's in there."

A typical practice sees all three guys getting near equal reps. Neither coach hinted that a starter has been named and Frye said that each of the three options prepare as if they are the team's leader. 

"They’ve all been getting reps and we continue to develop all three guys and we treat all three, every one of them, like they’re starters," Frye said. "That’s the expectation and that’s what going to help them go out and perform when their number’s called."    

The expectation is that the Chippewas will open with Moore behind center, given his experience and performance a season ago. However, Frye and McElwain have both been high on Richardson in recent conversations with reporters. 

"(Richardson) is a guy that really is able to make plays and create," McElwain said. "He's not a fast guy, not ultra-mobile but he does an outstanding job of seeing the field and creating explosives."

With three viable options, the Chippewas will have an interesting battle behind center leading up to the Nov. 4 season opener against Ohio. Regardless, both Frye and McElwain feel confident about their options. 

"Really proud of the group as a whole," Frye said, "how they handle their business, go about their everyday business and their work ethic and doing all those things that it takes to be a quarterback.”  

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