After seeing the shot Will Gardner took that put him out of the game last weekend, it wasn’t a surprise that he wouldn’t be playing this Sat against Wake Forest. Following the emotional week that Reggie Bonnafon and the rest of his family endured, the last thing on his mind would be whether or not he’d get the starting nod. Fast forward to today and here we are; the hometown kid starting for the hometown school. The next two weeks are crucial for the remainder of the season. The Cards face opponents that they should be able to beat. Of course there’s an emphasis on should because we know the result a couple of weeks ago in Charlottesville.
If you think about it, this is an opening audition for the true freshman to secure the starting spot for the foreseeable future. If he plays well and the Cards win at home tomorrow and at Syracuse, the chance that Petrino reinstates Gardner as the starter are slim to none. The struggles of the offensive line have been well documented and a mobile, dual-threat QB could help that embattled group move the chains. Gardner has been inconsistent, but he also hasn’t had adequate protection to operate effectively behind the line of scrimmage. It’s important to remember that Bonnafon is a true freshman and still grieving the loss of his father. On top of all that, he’ll be making his first collegiate start. Here’s hoping for a ton of success for Reggie on Saturday.