The Friedgen guarantee

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It’s time for another edition of Parsing Ralph Friedgen’s Words.

Alas, quarterback uncertainty forces this game so early in the season. Will Jordan Steffy play or won’t he? As Friedgen hinted earlier today, it didn’t look like Steffy and his right thumb would get much work during practice this afternoon.

The big fella stuck up his starter of the past, present and perhaps future with an impassioned plea – basically sounding off with the themes of Mike Gundy minus the absurd bombast and Youtube staying power. Here are some of those things that got checked off:

* Kid that does the right things.

* You wouldn’t want to hear your kid get jeered.

* Boo the coach, not the player.

But the final thing said about Steffy was arguably the most interesting.

“I can tell you this,” Friedgen said. “Regardless of who plays this week or next week or whatever: Jordan will come in and win a game for us before the season is over. I promise you that.”

Let’s see. When I hear “Come in and a win a game,” I associate that with coming in off the bench. It’s probably not an interpretation isolated to one person. So is the bench where Steffy will be this week? Or not? If so, will it be because of injury or effectiveness or both?

Who knows? But both Steffy and Chris Turner are off-limits to reporters today, which means viable answers won’t be coming until tomorrow evening at the earliest.

That’s tons of fun, and it means stories about thumbs up (Steffy plays) or thumbs down (he won’t) will last deep into the week. And that’s a shame, because there are a lot of storylines worth pursuing after Saturday’s 14-7 victory over Delaware – line play, Da’Rel Scott, inefficiency inside the 30s, the kicking game.

Now, one of the subplots for the next three months will be to see if Steffy actually can make Friedgen look prescient with his promise.

After all, that’s what happens when you pretty much make a guarantee.

Patrick Stevens

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