Football Season Preview: Quarterbacks

John Paschall, Reporter

Projected starter(s): senior Kain Colter

Key reserves: junior Trevor Siemian, sophomore Zack Oliver and freshman Matt Alviti

Breakout candidate: Colter

It’s difficult to say Colter is a breakout candidate because he’s a team captain and one of Northwestern’s best playmakers, but we see his star rising in terms of accuracy and arm strength on deep passes. There were concerns coming into last year about Colter’s passing ability, and Wildcats fans saw Siemian come in plenty of times to jump-start the passing attack. However, Colter did show some improvements last year on his deep ball, and the dual-threat quarterback proved to be accurate on bubble screens as well. He’s even said his shoulder is almost fully recovered from the torn labrum he suffered in high school. Look for the versatile senior to throw downfield more this year.

Season outlook

An overlooked part of the Cats’ success last year was the offense’s ability to take care of the football. Colter and Siemian threw only 4 interceptions in the regular season, an incredible accomplishment. The two signal-callers will have to repeat their performance in order for the Cats to continue their success. Colter’s health will also be something to keep an eye on this season because his style of play makes him very susceptible to injury. If he’s out for any period of time, the offense might have to be tweaked to suit Siemian’s pocket-passing strengths as opposed to a heavy dosage of the read-option attack.

— John Paschall

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