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Prep football: Roy finds success with QB rotation

Published September 15, 2012 3:00 pm

Prep football • Fernandes said he did not plan to play two QBs this season.
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Roy football coach Fred Fernandes has a dilemma.

He has yet to decide between senior Garrett Bowman and sophomore Tyler Skidmore to start at quarterback.

Then again, Fernandes might stay with the status quo.

Although Fernandes didn't plan on playing both equal amounts, the competition has worked out in the Royals' favor so far.

"I wanted one to rise to the top," Fernandes said following Roy's surprising struggle to win 9-3 in overtime against Murray. "But in playing both, their completion percentage has skyrocketed."

The competition has lifted both quarterbacks.

"It's competitive, yeah," Skidmore said. "But we're good friends off the field. We just go out and work hard."

Bowman started the first three games, but he was rotated out after two series in favor of Skidmore and his two series.

"There are times when I don't [want to come out]," Bowman said. "But Skids picks right up where I left off."

Both quarterbacks failed to play their best against inspired Murray. Circumstances, however, may force Fernandes' hand.

Bowman was knocked out of the game in the second quarter with a knee injury while being sacked. Bowman, who completed 1 of 2 pass attempts for 16 yards, only suffered bruising and is expected to have some soreness for a week or two.

Skidmore, who entered the Murray contest completing 65 percent of his passes, was limited to 7 of 16 for 89 yards. Yet Skidmore found his quality in crunch time, lofting a well-timed game-winning touchdown pass to Nate Jones in overtime.

The victory kept the Royals perfect at 4-0 and a date with their first 4A Region 5 opponent, at 3-1 Box Elder, scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday.

"We that's a reasonable goal, to win region and make a run at state," Bowman said.

The start to 2012 is not much different than a year ago when Roy opened the season 3-1 yet finished 4-5.

Still, it is quite a change considering where the program was in 2009 and 2010 when the Royals won just once.

A good part of the change for Roy has come at quarterback. Skidmore took most of the snaps and threw for nearly 900 yards with 12 touchdowns and only four interceptions as a freshman last season.

The two quarterbacks have combined for more than 700 yards, eight touchdowns and four picks this season.

"I like it," Skidmore said about the competition. "You want to do well and impress the coaches and show you can do it."

Fernandes believed that the competition would separate Bowman and Skidmore. It hasn't so far in victories against Clearfield, Weber and Fremont when the Royals put up 109 points.

Although the duo didn't play well against Murray, they were not helped with several dropped passes, especially early in the game.

Also, Roy fumbled on Murray's 1-yard line.

"I said, 'Heck, if the competition is creating [good play], we'll stay with that,'" Fernandes said. "I was clearly looking to pick a starter. I just haven't been able to do that."

martyr@sltrib.com