AUBURN — Auburn football used two quarterbacks to beat Cal, but coach Hugh Freeze wasn’t happy with the rotation.
“The other night was not something that I’m OK with,” Freeze said on the SEC coaches teleconference Wednesday. “… We’re still a work in progress and trying to learn what is our best chance to win football games knowing that we’re not quite probably where a lot of our SEC competitors are on the depth chart. But still trying to find a way to compete and what exactly that looks like.”
Michigan State transfer quarterback Payton Thorne started and played 43 snaps, according to Pro Football Focus. Robby Ashford came in sporadically and logged 15 snaps. Thorne, who was named Auburn’s starter during fall camp, registered 37 plays against UMass in Week 1 before being pulled in garbage time. Ashford saw 25 reps, with some coming in the first half and some coming during the blowout.
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“I think we’ve got to decide who is the guy,” Freeze said. “I’ve said and I mean this: Robby needs to get touches. But the shuffling in and out is not, I don’t think, healthy for anyone. Exactly what that looks like, we’re still leaning. I do believe that everyone in this building understands that you’ve got to earn the right to maintain playing time. That’s every position, it’s not just quarterback.
“I think as we move into these next few weeks, the picture will become clearer. I think Payton, obviously I’ve said this, I think he gives us our best chance to run the entire offense. And hopefully he’ll start taking hold of that and showing that and proving that. But at the same time, Holden (Geriner) and Robby are sure nipping at his heels wanting…