NDSU starting quarterback job still up for grabs

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FARGO, N.D. (Valley News Live) -- It's still an open competition for the starting quarterback job at North Dakota State.

Wednesday at Bison Media Day we got another glimpse into the timeline and thought process of the coaching staff as they continue to work towards naming a starter.

Noah Sanders, Trey Lance, and Zeb Noland are all in the running to be NDSU’s next starting quarterback.

“The three are very similar in the fact that they know our offensive scheme very well. I think they understand how defenses try to attack us,” quarterbacks coach Randy Hedberg said.

It’s a decision the coaching staff has been weighing since the end of last season.

But if you think the competition is getting nasty between the three it’s not.

“We’re never cheering for each other to do something wrong so it can make us look good," Sanders said. "We’re picking each other up, trying to encourage each other through this whole thing.”

“Always got to love competition, whether it’s at the New England Patriots or it’s here," Noland said. "I think that competition is fun and these guys make it fun to compete with because, like (Noah) said it’s fun every day to be at practice.”

“I don’t really worry about the pressure, really," Lance said. "I don’t think any of us do because we’re just focused on getting better every day as a unit. I think that’s the most important thing as an offense, helping the young guys get better.”

So what are the coaches looking at during practice to help them make this decision? The short answer: everything.

"Every snap is being evaluated in what they do," Hedberg said. "Whether they throw an incompletion or throw it away, get away from pressure, however they handle it.”

Whoever gets named the starter will have to be able to handle all facets of the offense, running the ball, throwing the ball, down to making sure the right play is being called and run.

Hedberg said the offense will highlight the skill set of the individual.

Head Coach Matt Entz said he’s relying on Hedberg and Offensive Coordinator Tyler Roehl as well as doing his own solo evaluation to make sure the decision they make is the right one.

"I don’t think we’re anywhere near ready to make a decision on the three but I like what they possess,” Entz said.

Entz added during his press conferencce he would like to have a starter named ten days before the Bison kick off the season against Butler on August 31.