Devin Leary is the most talented quarterback at NC State. His arm has been regarded to as a “generational talent”.
The biggest question surrounding Devin Leary (and most likely the reason he is not the starting quarterback this season) is that he “puts too much on short distance passes”. My question is how is that any different than Matt McKay? To maintain a sustainable successful program, we have to look for a quarterback that is going to be the best for NC State long term.
Full disclaimer: I am not at the practices, in the tape room or in the locker room daily like the coaching staff is. I do not know all that goes into starting McKay over Hockman or Leary. My opinion to start Leary would be purely the eye test and his performance at QB that brought him to State. This takes nothing away from Matt McKay. I believe Matt McKay is a great leader, seems to be upstanding guy and a hard worker. My biggest concern is not giving Leary a chance, or even a mere game snap, to prove himself in a real game situation.
What NC State stands to lose by not giving Devin Leary a shot at QB1 is having the redshirt Freshman transfer out following this season. That would could potentially be a catastrophe for QBU. I could see Leary transferring to a gunslinging, air raid Big 12 program such as Texas Tech or Oklahoma and becoming the next Mayfield or Maholmes. We saw it with Russell Wilson (Wisconsin) and Jalen McClendon (Baylor) where quarterbacks were not given the opportunity late into their career at NC State.
With Saturday’s game against Ball State, we have the opportunity to give all three quarterbacks meaningful game snaps. Bailey Hockman is the only other quarterback that has been given snaps but was not given play calls to really air it out.
It is not what NC State will benefit from giving Leary and Hockman meaningful snaps, it is more of what we will lose: detrimental transfers.