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Central Florida Quarterback Controversy: Justin Holman Is The Man, For Now?

UCF finally named Justin Holman the starting Quarterback heading into the game against Missouri. The move was a long time question and shows that life after Blake Bortles won't be so bad.

Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports

After UCF's Spring game, there was consensus between UCF fans on who the starting quarterback should have been. One quaterback  had stepped up and won the job in the fans minds.

Granted, none of the Quarterbacks had looked great, but one had performed better than the others.

That QB was sophomore dual-threat quarterback Justin Holman. Holman had showed off his arm and ability to scramble. He did make some bone-headed decisions, but he could also throw a tight, accurate deep ball. That had UCF fans salivating.

Holman has the look of a quarterback. He stands at 6'4" and is pure muscle. He was recruited out of Georgia by the likes of Arizona State, Missouri, and NC State, and was ranked as one of the better dual threat QBs out of high school. Yet despite bigger name programs recruiting him, Holman choose UCF.

In fact, he committed to UCF without visiting the school. He backed up Blake Bortles last year and played in those rare games where UCF blew out a teams. While it was a small sample size UCF fans heard good things about Holman on and off the field. He was the next star UCF qb most around the program believed.

To say that this summer has been strange for Knights fans is an understatement.  The strangest of all was the fact that Holman had not officially been named starter. Most fans were expecting it, but the announcement of Holman never came.

What did come was the announcement that redshirt freshman Pete DiNovo would start against Penn State. That shocked UCF fans. DiNovo didn't look that impressive in the spring game, nor was he a dual-threat QB. Most were confused as to what Holman could have done that cost him the startering role. It was later found out that DiNovo was the better practice player and Impressed the staff.

UCF fans were then subjected to the torture of watching DiNovo who was beyond bad, going 3-8 for 18 yards. The offense was missing their best wide receiver and running back, but that was no excuse for DiNovo's poor start. The offense was lifeless and it showed as the Knights struggled for points. Worst of all, star players J.J. Worton and Breshad  Perriman could not get the ball in their hands. It was embarrassing and UCF fans feared they would fade back into irrelevancy if DiNovo continued to start.

Then George O'Leary wised up. He brought Holman into the game after the first failed drive of the second half. O'Leary has had a history starting the wrong quaterback, for example starting Rob Calabrese over Brett Hodges. It was clear he had made the same mistake by starting DiNovo.

Once Holman came into the game, everything changed. The sophomore opened it up with a 19 yard pass to Worton. This was followed up with the fifty yard bomb to Breshad Perriman. Finally UCF's offense was cliwuiing under the sophomore. Sure Holman made mistakes, his fumble late in The game hurt UCF but still  he showed flashes of brilliance clouding the pass to Josh Reese in the fourth quarter.

I know you are thinking that it was only one game, against a handicapped Penn state team. Holman has to prove himself in other games before he is crowned the next great UCF quarterback. Hell UCF didn't even win the game.  These points are all true.

My counter argument is look at the offense under Holman in the second half. He only played a half and finished with 200 yards passing with 3 total tds. Without the best running back and wide receiver on the team, the offense came back to life. Holman took control of the game and revoke the previously lifeless UCF offense. If Justin Holman continues to play this way, the sky is the limit for him and. UCF.