Celebrating a win over Memphis wasn’t the only thing on Duke’s mind Saturday. After finishing the game 28-14 over Memphis the Blue Devils had to figure out what was next for them after Quarterback Anthony Boone’s broken collarbone that occurred late in the second quarter. Thankfully for the Devils Boone’s break does not require immediate surgery, however he is out for the season indefinitely.
Duke will take a major hit with the loss of Boone especially when he was starting to show promise. Boone earned the position of quarterback during the offseason and completing 75 percent of his passes through the season’s first six quarters and rushing for a pair of touchdowns, including a 23-yarder in Memphis. Good thing the Devils have junior Brandon Connette as backup. Connette is an experienced quarterback, tight end and running back throughout his first two seasons of college football. During the game against Memphis, Connette proved to be a vital player on the field as a passing threat. Coming in after Boone’s injury Connette completed 14-of-21 passes for a total of 198 yards including the two fourth-quarter touchdowns.
So fans ask, what’s next for the Duke Blue Devils? Coach David Cutcliffe stated to ESPN, “We’re going to run it and throw it and have the balance that we were hoping to have coming into this season.” Connette proved that he is capable of holding his own as quarterback on this team. As a physical runner the Devils will play to his strengths, while trying to dial up blocking schemes designed to minimized the risk involved. Connette, however, will have to work on his decision making while on the field. During the Memphis game, while his performance was admirable, he did take three sacks and misread plays, like handing the ball off to a running back with a defender right on his heels. Cutcliffe and the Blue Devils need to take this week to regroup from Boone’s injury to be able to come out strong against Georgia Tech on Saturday.