Manitoba Bisons football coach Brian Dobie has a tough task ahead of him before the 2012 season gets underway in a couple of weeks.
At issue is who will lead the team at the starting quarterback position, as the veteran coach weeds out the top contender from a group of five vying for the top spot.
“It’s not a great thing (to not know who will start),” Dobie said on Tuesday. “It’s always a luxury when you go into a university season with a fourth- or fifth-year starter who has gone through the ropes. It’s highly competitive — may the best man win.”
Quarterbacks John Makie, Cam Clark, Theo Deezar, Ryan Marsch and Marc Paquette will have the chance to impress Dobie during training camp and at the team’s first exhibition game of the season on August 24 in Regina.
“We came out of spring camp with all of these guys, and they all performed really well. That’s what makes it difficult. We thought somebody would unquestionably separate and there would be that huge edge,” Dobie added.
“I’m definitely coming into camp confident,” perspective starting QB Ryan Marsch said. “I’ve been training extremely hard on the off-season (at Elite Performance). They’re putting me in the right position to get the job done.”
Marsh was in a similar situation with the Winnipeg Rifles for his first two years with another player for the starting spot, but says he enjoys the competition.
In total, 87 players will make up training camp this Saturday on the U of M’s Fort Garry campus (east field), with players going through testing on Thursday.
The Bisons will be in familiar surroundings this season as they remain at University Stadium for one more year. With the delays at Investors Group Field, the Winnipeg Blue Bombers had offered Canad Inns Stadium to the Herd, but logistics-wise, it was easier for the team to remain on campus.
Manitoba opens the regular season on the road at UBC on September 1 before returning to Winnipeg for their home opener on September 8 when they host Saskatchewan.