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Kilgore just needs more time
Posted Nov 4, 2011
Sophomore quarterback Logan Kilgore’s first season as a full-time starting quarterback has been mixed between outstanding performances and not so good moments that have made fans wonder how it can be the same person taking the snaps.
As strange as his season may seem up to this point, it’s actually not that much of a surprise when we peer deeper into how he can look like a future pro prospect one week and a career back-up the next.
The answer to that can likely be summed up by Kilgore’s outstanding raw talent and lack of game-day experience. Kilgore entered his first year at the junior college level in California with very little high school experience. His first real opportunity to be a full-time starter was at Bakersfield College. The type of defenses Kilgore has to face at the I-A (i.e.FBS) level far exceeds the talent, schemes and speed he competed against as a junior college quarterback.
Looking at the schedule gives us further evidence of Kilgore’s progression this season. Based on Kilgore’s lack of playing experience it’s compelling evidence that his best performances of the season have come when he’s had extra time to prepare either at the beginning of the season or after a bye week.
With an abundance of time to prepare for the season opener, Kilgore was outstanding in nearly leading the Blue Raiders to an upset over
. Kilgore made only a few minor mistakes and one major error on a screen pass that should have been thrown away and was intercepted. In leading the Blue Raider offense, Kilgore passed for 330 yards on a very efficient 60% completion percentage with two touchdown tosses.
With an extra week to prepare against
, Kilgore had statistically his best game as a Raider passing for over 400 yards and five touchdown passes. The
offense against the Trojans was reminiscent of the 2001 offense that shattered most of the single season records. But even with his outstanding performance, Kilgore’s inexperience reared its ugly head on Middle’s final drive when Kilgore made several mis-reads including one on fourth down that stalled what was looking like either a game-winning touchdown or game-tying field goal.
Against FAU, Kilgore and his offense had more than two weeks to prepare for the Owls defense, and Kilgore shined – once again – as he completed his first 19 passes en route to leading the Blue Raiders to 21-first quarter points and an easy 38-14 victory.
When playing in back-to-back weeks, Kilgore’s performances have been less consistent. Last week, an ill advised pass that was intercepted and returned for a Louisiana touchdown set the stage for a game that saw the Blue Raiders play all night in catch up mode and never get into a rhythm offensively.
Kilgore had his best back-to-back performances following the Troy game when Middle Tennessee hosted
, but he followed up the last second victory over the Tigers with a short week that resulted in an ugly loss to
. In that match-up, Kilgore completed less than 50% of his passes and endured six possessions of five plays or less.
If further proof is needed, Kilgore has completed nearly as many passes (83) in three games with extra preparation time as he has in four games without it (88). He’s also thrown for more yards in those three games (averaging 321) than he has the other four (averaging 228).
Due to Kilgore’s lack of game-day experience, the extra preparation time has been a key component to his successful outings. Unfortunately, for Middle Tennessee and Kilgore, there are no more open dates on the schedule and the Blue Raiders are in the midst of playing on seven consecutive weeks without a week off.
The good news for Blue Raiders fans is this is exactly what Kilgore needs to grow into his role not only as the signal caller for the offense but as a team leader on a unit that could benefit from non-coaching leadership.
There is no question Kilgore has the skill set and talent to develop not only into the best quarterback in the Sun Belt but also one of the best pure passers in the nation over the next few years. He just needs more time on the field and more experience as a collegiate quarterback.
Kilgore with Extra Prep Time (3 Games)
Kilgore without Extra Prep Time (4 games)
963 (321 per game)
912 (228 per game)
10 (3.3 per game)
6 (1.5 per game)
4 (1.33 per game)
5 (1.25 per game)
3 to 1
1 to 1
Team Points per Game
Blue Raiders drop double OT game to WKU
Oct 6, 2011
Turning a corner
Oct 5, 2011
Top Five Upset Alerts in Week Two
Sep 8, 2011
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