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Evaluating Arizona’s young quarterback prospects


Note: This wraps up our conversation last week with Arizona quarterbacks coach Frank Scelfo. See links at bottom of post for more on the Wildcats quarterbacks.

Arizona’s 2012 quarterback plans are up in the air.

The Wildcats could have senior Matt Scott — if all goes well and he is able to redshirt behind Nick Foles this season.

And the Wildcats could have Rutgers transfer quarterback Tom Savage, who, as of Wednesday, is on a recruiting visit to Arizona.

Or they could have neither.

In the meantime, true freshman quarterback Daxx Garman, who enrolled at the semester break, can prepare for the future without the urgency of getting ready to play right away.

How can Arizona help him before spring practice begins?

“Just getting him to class, find the locker room, getting dressed, try to get him to take a deep breath so he’s OK with stuff,” quarterback coach Frank Scelfo said light-heartedly.

“The good part about a guy coming in early is that you’re able to coach him and spend time with him without the rigors of getting ready for a game. Because once you get to the season, you can’t spend time with those guys.”

That was the case in the fall with freshman Cam Allerheiligen, who spent last season on the scout team. He’s the team’s other young scholarship quarterback who will get coaching attention in spring ball, which starts March 21. The spring game is set for April 16.

“Cam is a really smart guy. He’s a gym rat,” Scelfo said. “He’s more than capable and he’s starting to come into his own. He’s starting to feel more comfortable.”

A year from now, each of these quarterbacks might be competing for playing time — or even a starting spot, who knows? — but Scelfo can continue to work on their fundamentals until then.

Garman didn’t play high school ball last season, ruled ineligible after transferring from Jones (Okla.) High to Southlake (Texas) Carroll High School. Arizona coach Mike Stoops said having Garman here for spring helps make up for that experience gap.

Perhaps in a hurry.

“It’s going to be one of those things where he gets a good feel for what’s going on, and we’ll evaluate him and see how rusty he is and then let him go play,” Scelfo said.

“We’re going to be yelling at him in the spring game and he should be going to prom.”

More Arizona quarterback stories:

Ex-Rutgers quarterback Tom Savage makes Arizona his first recruiting stop

Scelfo sets out spring strategy for Nick Foles

Even with redshirt plan, Matt Scott needs to prepare to play

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