Does ascent of Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa signal end of dumbed-down college quarterbacks?
Alabama freshman quarterback Tua Togavailoa (13) scrambles away from Georgia tackle Trenton Thompson during the Crimson Tide’s 26-23 overtime win over the Bulldogs
Could that final gorgeous play by Bama’s freshman phenom quarterback herald a renaissance of college quarterbacks who can both run when necessary but also read secondaries and manipulate them to make throws downfield? Are we finally at the termination point of the read-option orgy? Only time will tell, but Tua Togavailoa gives us hope.
Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (13) sets to pass during the second half of College Football Playoff championship game against Georgia on Monday in Atlanta.
As the final pass on the final play of the college football season zinged out of Tua Tagovailoa’s left hand, you could practically hear it fizz.
You know what I mean if you’ve ever been in close physical proximity to a quarterback who can spin the ball that way. It has a sound to it, the hiss of a thousand tiny leather nipples carving through the air. When you hear the sound, you always see the wondrous accompanying image – a football going phooom in a graceful arc at velocity as if a guided missile.
I’m old, so when I saw the Hawai`ian kid throw that ball, I thought of Joe Namath. To me, he and John Elway will always be the gold standard for guys who could propel a football that way. It just exploded out of his hand as if it carried its own energy.
That’s how beautiful that throw was. I’ve seen longer throws that won games, even on the last play. But I can’t recall seeing a college freshman who not only flung it like that but looked off the throw-side safety in a cover-two for a good two beats before he threw it. It was an NFL throw in every way.