Appleby ‘closing gap’ on Etling for starting job

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (WLFI) – Coach Darrell Hazell planned on naming a starting quarterback by this point in Purdue football training camp.

Instead of picking his guy, Hazell is now extending the quarterback position battle until after he evaluates Saturday’s Jersey Scrimmage.

Plans change, and the biggest reason for that is the play of redshirt sophomore Austin Appleby. Danny Etling entered camp as the team’s number one quarterback, but Hazell says Appleby has forced him to delay the decision. 

“I think Austin’s done a great job. I really do,” Hazell said. “He’s certainly closed the gap by coming in fall ball. He’s closed the gap. So, we’re going to give him every opportunity to win the job.”

Etling and Appleby split the first team reps through the first week of camp. Now with the competition heating up, the jersey scrimmage presents a big opportunity for both guys.

“I think Saturday, we’re going to go live with them at least one series,” Hazell said. “It’s always scary because you’re two weeks out. But I think we need to put them under the heat a little bit and see how they respond, then we’ll figure out from there.”

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