Ian Book came onto the scene and never looked back once he took the starting job from Brandon Wimbush. Book had plenty of great moments and he is a major reason for such a great season. But he also has a young QB that was highly touted out of high school and fans have been clamoring to see. So, how quick would Kelly be to try someone else?
Ian Book Can Shine
Book was intelligent and able to take care of the ball. He wasn’t a runner but was able to move in the pocket and pick up yards on the ground when needed. He also completely changed the dynamic of the Notre Dame offense by opening up the passing game.
After struggling offensively to start the season, Ian Book was the shot that was needed to get Notre Dame going and lead them to their first playoff berth. While Book didn’t play well in the playoff, that came against one of the best defenses in the country. It was also the biggest game of his career so there are some reasons for a poor performance.
This is just another example to show what Book brings to the table as the starting QB. He can keep plays alive and has proven he can make the big throw. Book has flaws to his game but this was also his first season as a full time starter. There are going to be issues you have to work through as he develops. The only problem with the development is Brian Kelly’s history.
The Dreaded Second Year Starter Under Brian Kelly
Everett Golson, Deshone Kizer, Dayne Crist and even Brandon Wimbush all have something in common. They came on strong or seemed promising but failed to develop and grow in their second year as a starter. Brian Kelly isn’t all to blame but he has had multiple offensive coordinators and there seems to be a reoccurring problem.
I mentioned earlier that Ian Book struggled and there were more reasons then just him for it. But Book also needs to grow and be better then he was for Notre Dame to take the next step. A minimal improvement just wouldn’t be enough as Notre Dame continues to make a push and enter that top tier of college football.
Book also loses his top target in Boykin but will have plenty of weapons returning. Chase Claypool and Jafar Armstrong could really become the new producers on offense. Michael Young could also be a big part of the offense as he has shown he is explosive when he has the ball in his hands. Young had seven catches for 138 yards last season. That is good for almost 20 yards per catch last year. Book will have pieces to help him succeed next season.
So how quickly will Kelly move on from Kelly if he struggles? He moved on from Wimbush but Ian Book had some game experience before the 2018 season. Jurkovec redshirted and only attempted two passes in 2018. Kelly has shown a change and adapted since the disaster 2016 season. Notre Dame is trending in the right direction and picking the right quarterback could be all the difference, just look at the Clemson game.
So should Kelly put all his confidence in Ian Book or is Jurkovec to tempting to sit for another year? Let us know below.
Started Saturday Tailgate in 2018. Covering all things college football and talking Notre Dame on Twitter.