Obviously, no one wanted it to happen like this.
Obviously, it was a middle-of-the-road FCS opponent.
Obviously, his stats didn’t really jump off the page.
But Joe Hubener looked pretty good, didn’t he?
Jesse Ertz won the job fair and square, and likely deserved it. I wish we’d seen more of what he’s capable of, and I hope we still have a chance to this season. Because Hubes looked good, and if Ertz is better, I want to see it.
I said it all offseason. Too much was made of the spring game.
And I’m not the only one who said it.
Who am I?
I’m just some dude who enjoys writing.
I’m no expert.
But I listen.
And the players said it too.
The coaches said it.
The spring game is nothing but a glorified practice.
It's no place to gauge actual in-game ability.
Joe can play.
And he did play.
No one outside of Vanier knows the extent of Jesse’s injury. We all hope he’s fine. We all hope he’ll get a chance to throw his first career pass this Saturday in San Antonio.
But, if he doesn’t, Joe will do fine.
Joe played in the Alamo Bowl.
Joe played on the road at TCU.
Yes, it was garbage time. But it makes a difference. Experience of any kind makes a difference.
After seeing Joe last year, then seeing the spring game, then seeing him Saturday, I believe more than ever that he knows when it counts and he turns it on for that.
He went 9-for–18 for 147 yards and a score. Not exactly world-beating, but there were plenty of dropped passes — one that was clearly a touchdown.
But there were more important things than stats. His confidence in the pocket, his authority throwing the football — both were worlds above what we saw in April. His running — often considered a strength of his game — actually wasn’t all that impressive.
He fumbled once, then almost did it again.
But, if he starts in San Antonio — in what would be his first start as a quarterback at any level — I’d wager he won’t fumble again.
Joe wants this more than anything. He’s dreamed of it his entire life.
Obviously, no one wanted it this way.
But Joe will make the most of it.
EDIT: Per Coach Snyder's comments in the coaches teleconference, Joe will start Saturday and Jesse will be out "quite some time." So, I guess the Hubes Era is upon us.