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


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

Moc Wrestlers Compete In Blue & Gold Match At Chamberland Field

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga wrestling team continues to develop innovative ways to showcase its student-athletes to fans and supporters.  Tonight's Blue & Gold Match at Chamberlain Field was another outstanding example of these efforts. The Mocs took their annual preseason exhibition outdoors to the middle of campus.  Over 300 fans showed with lawn ... (click for more)

UTC To Host SoCon Cross-Country Championships Saturday

 The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga men’s and women’s cross country teams will host and compete in the 2016 Southern Conference Cross Country Championships this Saturday morning at Camp Jordan.   “It’s a great honor to host the Southern Conference,” Chattanooga head coach Andy Meyer said. “The weather is supposed to be good and people will get to see a quality ... (click for more)

School Board Chooses Charlotte Firm For Superintendent Search Firm; Lennon, Testerman Want To Keep Kelly

The County School Board on Thursday night voted 5-4 to choose a Charlotte, N.C., search firm to pick a new county school superintendent. Coleman Lew and Associates was selected over McPherson & Jacobson of Omaha. That vote came after board members Kathy Lennon and David Testerman started the session by saying they are very pleased with Interim Supt. Kirk Kelly and would ... (click for more)

Judge Finds Young Guilty Of Lesser Charge In Fatal Wreck On Highway 58

Judge Tom Greenholtz on Wednesday found William Henry Young guilty of a lesser charge in a fatal traffic accident on Highway 58. The judge, who heard the case without a jury, ruled the 56-year-old former TVA employee guilty of criminally negligent homicide. He had been charged with vehicular homicide. Sentencing will be in December. Judge Greenholtz dismissed charges ... (click for more)

Accountability Doesn't Have To Be A Bad Word

Am I making a difference? Isn’t that the basic question we all ask ourselves, and seek to demonstrate to others?  Ronald Reagan said:  “Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world. But, the Marines don't have that problem.”   We would argue teachers do not have that problem either.    Educators make a huge difference ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Guess Who Backed Kelly?

Two weeks before the August election where three members of the Hamilton County School Board were angrily replaced, the organizer of what was called “a great way for the (challengers) to raise great money to help them run smart campaigns” made a bold statement. “I'm sure the current board is well-intentioned, but the results are not there," said Paul Brock. "Leadership matters ... (click for more)