This spring, Myrtle Beach native Everett Golson appeared poised to lock up the starting position at Notre Dame, again. Reports suggested that Golson took every (or most) of the first team reps. He even started the Blue-Gold scrimmage. But, Golson decided to transfer.
Malik Zaire’s performance against Texas made fans quickly forget about the Quarterback who led Notre Dame to the BCS National Title Game. Zaire completed 19 of 22 passes for 313 yards and 3 touchdowns.
Many fans probably wished that Golson was on the roster when Zaire went down for the season with an ankle injury. But, DeShone Kizer has acquitted himself well as the Irish signal caller.
Where would Notre Dame be today if Golson had stayed in South Bend?
Kizer’s numbers are much better than Golson and Zaire’s. The Sophomore player from Toledo Central Catholic has tallied about 279 yards per contest. Additionally, he has scored 22 total touchdowns more than double Golson’s 11 touchdowns.
On the flip side, Golson appears to have fixed his turnover issue. The 5th-year Senior has only thrown 1 interception this season. Kizer has thrown 6 interceptions, which is still a low number. Those 6 interceptions rank tied for 27th lowest in the country.
It is difficult to argue that Golson would have made a significant difference for the Irish in 2015.
ESPN’S MICHAEL WILBON CALLED DESHONE KIZER THE BEST PLAYER IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL. IRISH FANS KNOW THAT THIS IS AN ABSURD STATEMENT. BUT, IT DEMONSTRATES THE TYPE OF IMPACT AND POTENTIAL KIZER POSSESSES.
However, he may have played a role in turning around Notre Dame’s lone defeat at Clemson.
In the loss to Clemson, DeShone Kizer completed 19 of 34 passes for 321 yards with 2 touchdowns and 1 interception. Kizer’s performance was not good or bad. His performance in the second half was very strong. However, would a more experienced Everett Golson played better in a hostile road environment? Possibly. Unfortunately, an apples-to-apples comparison is impossible because Golson did not play against Clemson.
Although the argument about who would have been the better Quarterback in 2015 is debatable, there is no debate about the future of the Irish Quarterback position. Kizer has shown much more in a redshirt Freshman season than Everett Golson did during the 2012 season (also his redshirt Freshman year).
Kizer is on pace to throw around 2900 yards in a shortened season. Golson threw for 2405 yards in 2012. Additionally, Kizer has already thrown more touchdowns (16) than Golson did the entire year (12).
In fairness to Golson, his role was different on the 2012 team. He needed to manage the game and not make mistakes. Kelly said that Golson “rode the bus” to the National Championship Game.
Florida State, you can have Everett Golson. Kizer is a better leader and more upside than the 5th-year Senior.