BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WDRB) – For the first time since 2009, the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers hit the practice field Wednesday without record-setting quarterback Brandon Doughty.

Doughty, who was 27-11 as a starter and helped WKU to two bowl wins, is in the Miami Dolphins NFL Camp. Toppers head coach Jeff Brohm has four candidates to replace Doughty.

“After the first seven to ten days, we’ll narrow it down and have a starter then, but I like the way our guys have been working. It’s still going to be competitive. Without question, by then, I think we should have a guy who will start to get most of the reps. The others will be ready just in case their number is called,” Brohm said during Wednesday’s media day.

One of the four quarterbacks looking to earn that spot is former Penn State and U of L quarterback Tyler Ferguson. He says he’s eager to compete for a coveted role in the crowded field.

“I think I just need to show them I have a full grasp on the offense. I think they know what I can do physically,” Ferguson  said.

Former South Florida starting quarterback Mike White is eligible to play this year after sitting out last year due to NCAA transfer rules. He may have the edge going into the fall camp.

WKU opens the season with a Thursday night matchup in Bowling Green against Rice before hitting the road to take on SEC power Alabama.

“We have a very good home schedule, a good non-conference schedule, and some very good conference opponents on the road where we have to go into their place and find a way to win. So we are excited, looking forward to it and I know our players are as well,” said Brohm.

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