Fans: Wisconsin transfer Hornibrook will be serviceable backup for Florida State

By: Fletcher Keel | WCTV Eyewitness Sports
March 12, 2019

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- Florida State's quarterback situation has been the most interesting off-season storyline for the Seminoles, with the departure of starter Deondre Francois to the National Signing Day misses on several fronts and, as of this past weekend, the entrance of a new signal caller to the fold.

As if the start of spring ball isn't exciting enough, the Noles were given a sign of good news when it was reported that Wisconsin starter Alex Hornibrook will grad transfer to Florida State for the 2019 season.

No official confirmation, from FSU or from Hornibrook, has been made since he's still an active student at Wisconsin.

But, with help seemingly on the horizon for the Noles, who have just one quarterback with in-game experience on the roster in 2017's starter James Blackman, we asked Florida State fans what they thought about Hornibrook's role will be in 2019.

A majority of fans say, and arguably rightly so, that Hornibrook will back up Blackman, who has been waiting for his chance to take the Noles over as his team since the start of last season, when Francois returned from injury.

When comparing the numbers, Blackman's 2017 (the year he was a starter and appeared in 12 games) was far stronger statistically than Hornibrook's injury-riddled 2018 season.

Across the board, Blackman posted stronger numbers with the exception of completion percentage - Hornibrook completed 59.5 of his passes last year while Blackman completed 58.2 of his attempts.

But, across the rest of the board, the incumbent has the upper hand:

  • Blackman threw for 2,230 yards in his last season as a starter, Hornibrook threw for 1,532 (across nine games). Even taking the three-game discrepancy in mind, Blackman still averaged more yards per game through the air (185.8 to Hornibrook's 170.2).
  • Blackman tossed 19 touchdowns in his true freshman campaign, compared to Hornibrook's 13 this year.
  • While both players had an equal amount of yards per attempt (7.5) in their comparable seasons, Blackman posted a stronger adjusted yards per attempt (7.1) than the former Badger (6.3).

    While neither option is necessarily a bad one to start under center for Willie Taggart's squad in 2019, staring Hornibrook over Blackman, at least at the beginning of the season with little to no sample size, might be a little more doing too much rather than doing something.

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