UND Quarterbacks share spotlight and workload for the Fighting hawks

Published: Aug. 17, 2022 at 9:59 PM CDT
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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) - Always having something reliable and dependable is a key to reliable and dependable football. For the UND Fighting Hawks, they found that reliability in the quarterback position.

“Not trying to do too much, put the ball in the hands of our playmakers and let them do what they do,” quarterback Tommy Schuster said. “I think that’s the biggest thing: making good decisions and taking care of the ball.”

Those good decisions helped Schuster to a staggering 65% completion rate, leading the Missouri Valley Conference.

But the Hawks only managed a tepid 5-6 record, losing five of those six by a touchdown or less.

So perhaps some shakeup in the age-old system was needed.

Enter Quincy Vaughn, last year’s backup quarterback, but now is planning to get a much more major role alongside Schuster.

“Me and Tommy have grown really close,” Vaughn said. “We help each other, we push each other everyday. Heading into the season, I always have his back and I’m sure he always has mine. We’re always pushing each other, regardless of who’s one, who’s two. It’s all about the team and the offense as a whole unit.

This comradere and closeness sets aside the normal quarterback rivalry to a pure drive to win, and, according to offensive coordinator Danny Fruend, the new dual-QB system will try to highlight each leader’s strengths.

“You don’t wanna always play two quarterbacks, but we feel like we have an advantage in terms of their skillsets in what the defense has to prepare for,” Fruend said. “In terms of when Quincey and Tommy are going in there, and sometimes you might play them together, we don’t know. We feel they’re good learners, they’re good for the team, and it’ll be fun seeing them out there this year.”

Even in a limited role and zero starts, Vaughn rushed for 134 yards and three scores, plus a 53% passing rate for 70 yards and three touchdowns, and without a single turnover.

“I’m excited,” Vaughn said. “Whatever the team needs, especially on the offensive side of the ball, I’m ready to do. Obviously, I’m competing for the number one spot like always, all the way up until Lincoln. Whenever I come in, whether it’s throwing the ball, running the ball, or doing whatever the team needs, I’m excited for it.”

This first test of the season for these two quarterbacks will come in their season opener against Nebraska on September 3rd.

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