Oklahoma State has three legitimate quarterback candidates to replace the departing Brandon Weeden in 2012. Starting with Clint Chelf, a junior, has seen limited playing time over the last two seasons.
But it's more time than red-shirt freshman J.W. Walsh. And Walsh has more than the other potential starter; a true freshman who enrolled a semester early.
His name is Wes Lunt. He's an eighteen year old from Rochester, Illinois, who knew the circumstances coming into this first season.
"We were very open with him coming into this first spring," said OSU head coach Mike Gundy.
"We told everybody how we were going to do it. So we wanted everybody to understand what was going on. And at the end of the spring, we were going to name a starter."
Glancing at the overall passing numbers, none of the three appeared to come away as a clear cut favorite purely on Saturday's spring game stats:
Which begs the questions: In order to have a true freshman start at the most important position, does Lunt need to have played significantly better than the other two players to win the job? Mike Gundy does not believe so.
Gundy said, "There's three guys out there. And none of them have ever played or have any experience when the game counted... If the freshman is the best one, then so be it."
The players believe having someone that young at starting quarterback is still capable of rallying the team and being a deserving leader.
"He's the quarterback so we have to listen to him," explained junior running back Jeremy Smith. "We just have to keep him calm and explain to him that it's just football; whether it's high school, college, whatever. It's football."
Junior linebacker Shaun Lewis agreed.
"The older guys will rally around him," said Lewis. "That'll help give (Lunt) confidence and the older guys will give him our trust and that will help him be more comfortable playing with the older guys."
Coach Gundy said he'll meet with offensive coordinator Todd Monken this coming week to decide who will be the next starting quarterback for OSU.
Whoever that player is will receive a majority of the reps when the team opens preseason camp, which also raises the coaches' expectations according to Gundy.
"Once we name the starter, we're going to expect that guy to improve considerably because he has the reps and has a feel for being in the game with certain players and the players get used to being out there with him."