LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Bobby Petrino played all four of his quarterbacks in Western Kentucky's 58-17 win over Morgan State Saturday. The Western Kentucky head coach doesn't expect that to happen every game and he was non-committal about which QB might start when the 2-2 Toppers host unbeaten Navy this Saturday in Bowling Green.
"To me it's how can we operate with this guy, said Petrino. "How can we do this or that? It was fun to get them all in there the other night. I think they did a great job during the week in their preparation and working hard for it. It was a great motivating factor. We have to see how the week plays out this week and where we are at. I did really think it was good for our football team. I thought it was good for our quarterbacks, our youth at the position and us trying to learn about how we operate the offense. I think the thing that we learned as a staff is that you play to your strengths, which is our running backs and our offensive line. Get it to the guys who can make plays."
True Freshman Todd Porter got his first collegiate start against Morgan State and completed 5-of-10 passes for 76 yards with one interception. The starter the first three games, Brandon Doughty was 7-for-7 passing off the bench. Nelson Fishback was 3-for-4 and Seneca grad DeMarcus Smith was 2-for-3 with an interception.
On not having a starter locked in at Quarterback, Petrino said, "It poses some challenges but we created them ourselves. We had opportunities to just take care of the ball and play well as an offense and we weren't able to do that. We have some work to do to have some consistency. That's really what we are looking for, consistency."
The coach reiterated that running the ball is a team strength. The Toppers rushed for 375 yards against Morgan State, 213 of them from Senior Antonio Andrews.
Navy comes in to the game off a bye-week after opening the season with a 41-35 win at Indiana and a 51-7 win over Delaware. Petrino hopes his run defense stays strong against the ground-bound Midshipmen.
"The key is slowing them down and not giving up the big plays," said the first-year Topper coach. "It sounds funny because they wouldn't mind just sitting there and having the ball for a very long time but what they have lived on this year, in their first two games, is the big play. The quarterback running the ball or pitching the ball and they have speed on the edge. Then, like I said, their play action game and throwing it deep. The number one thing we have to do is be real successful on first and 10. If they are getting six, seven or eight yards on first and 10, we are going to struggle. We have to do a good job on first and 10 and get them behind the sticks a little bit. You'd like to see the game play out where we get some early stops, score some points and put some pressure on them."
"When we looked at our schedule and we saw Navy and Army on it, we started practicing for it way back in spring ball," Petrino continued. "We had 15 minute periods just about every practice in spring ball except when we were scrimmaging. We spent some time last week on it. It's tough. It is a unique offense in the way the line blocks, the way they cut block and everything about it is something you don't practice all the time. It will be a challenge for us. I think our guys are excited about it."
Kickoff is 2 p.m. eastern Saturday at Houchens Industries-L.T. Smith Stadium. It is also Military Appreciation Day.
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