UTC Football: Battle of the Quarterbacks

Bennifield and Roberson Working for No.2 Spot

Thursday, August 14, 2014 - by B.B. Branton

Junior Jacob Huesman is the returning starting quarterback for the UTC Mocs, but there is a battle for the number two spot.

A pair of redshirt freshman QBs - Alejandro Bennifield and Tyler Roberson  - are working each day of pre-season practice to display their talents as UTC head football coach Russ Huesman and offensive coordinator Jeff Durden will most likely make the decision on the back-up signal caller a few days prior to the season opener at Central Michigan (Thursday, August 28).

A look at the Two Quarterbacks

No. 15 Alejandro Bennifield … 6-2, 215 … Age: 19 (turns 20 on Oct 16, two days before The Citadel game) … Lovejoy (Ga.) High School … 4,000 passing yards and 40 TDs his last two years

No. 17 Tyler Roberson … 6-4, 210 … Age: 20 … Augusta (Ga.) Christian … 5,700 career passing yards and 49 TDs

Similarities - redshirt freshmen … 2-star recruits out of Georgia high schools … both attended UTC’s summer camp prior to their senior year of high school which was a key factor in them choosing to play for the Mocs.

Differences – Roberson throws right, Bennifield is a lefty (yet writes and eats with his right hand) … Roberson (pronounced ROB-er-son) is a business management major, while Bennifield is studying computer science.

What Needs to Improve

Bennifield - “I need to be more of a leader and be able to earn the respect of the older players.”

Roberson – “I feel I have good leadership skills and can run the ball well, but need to improve my arm strength.”

Honors: Bennifield was two-time all-region in football at Lovejoy and led his team to a pair of state runner-up finishes.

Roberson led Augusta Christian to the South Carolina Independent Schools AAA state championship in 2012. “That was a lot of fun and a dream come true to win a state title.”

What Most People Don’t Know

Alejandro Bennifield – was sixth in the state in the discus (160 feet) as a senior at Lovejoy HS

Tyler Roberson … his dad has three siblings and each of those four has four kids; the oldest is 30 and the youngest (Tyler’s youngest brother) is 12 ...  Tyler is 20.

“Growing up we never had a problem finding someone to play with,” Roberson said with a smile. “We played a lot of tackle football (no pads) growing up which made us tough.”

What’s Next:  The second of two pre-season scrimmages is Friday at Finley Stadium (3 p.m.) and both QBs will have a chance to show what they can do in game-type situations.

Stats From Scrimmage 8-9-14

Quarterbacks

Jacob Huesman – 9/16, 105 yards, TD, INT
Alejandro Bennifield – 6/14, 92 yards
Tyler Roberson – 3/6, 40 yards
Xavier Johnson – 0-2, INT


Lee's Brooks, Noble Earn Top Seven Finishes At Division II Track Chanmpionships

Lee University’s Josiah Brooks and Christian Noble earned top-seven finishes in their events on the second day of the NCAA Division II Track & Field Championships at IMG Academy Track & Field Stadium.   Brooks began the day with a sixth-place finish in the triple jump final. The sophomore recorded a distance of 15.81 meters in his first jump. He was unable to ... (click for more)

Spring Fling Tennis Finals: Baylor’s Drew Hawkins Wins Third Singles Title

MURFREESBORO - Baylor senior Drew Hawkins joined a select group of prep tennis players from the Chattanooga area Friday winning her third straight TSSAA D-II AA singles championship with a 6-2, 6-1, win against teammate and good friend Landie McBrayer here Friday at the Old Fort Park Tennis Complex. Hawkins, who will play college tennis at Belmont next year lost only one ... (click for more)

Motorcyclist Dies After Crossing Center Line On Bonny Oaks Drive

A motorcyclist died after crossing the center line on Bonny Oaks Drive on Friday night. Chattanooga Police responded at 6:43 p.m. to a traffic crash at 7100 Bonny Oaks Dr.   A Jeep Renegade driven by 33-year-old Christina L. Cangelier was traveling east on Bonny Oaks Drive when a Suzuki motorcycle crossed the double yellow line and struck the Jeep head on. The ... (click for more)

Richard Anderson, 29, Struck And Killed While Trying To Cross Highway 153

Richard Anderson II, 29, was killed Friday night, while trying to cross Highway 153.   Chattanooga Police responded at 11:36 p.m. to a traffic crash involving a pedestrian struck.   A Honda Civic driven by Kelsey Hamilton, 20, was traveling southbound on Highway 153 in the middle lane with other traffic in adjacent lanes.   Mr. Anderson, wearing ... (click for more)

Memorial Day Remembrance

Memorial/Decoration Day officially became rooted in the American consciousness by Major General and then head of the fraternal organization of the Grand Army of the Republic Commander in Chief John A. Logan's General Order No. 11., which publicly conveyed that, “the 30th day of May 1868 is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Those Who Said Nothing

I have two wonderful friends who are smart – each has a doctorate. One, a left-leaning liberal, is not bothered in the least by Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos' sweeping cuts and changes to public education. “Trump will be impeached before any of her plans can take place” is the promise. My other chum so far to the right the guy needs a turn signal. “I’ve been watching this ... (click for more)