Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass football could play both Ross Comis and Andrew Ford Saturday against Tulane

(Caroline O’Connor/Daily Collegian)

It’s clear by now that the quarterback situation for the 2016 Massachusetts football team has been its most prominent and overt dilemma the team has dealt with during the first five weeks of the season.

But come Saturday when UMass (1-4) travels to Virginia to face Old Dominion, Minutemen coach Mark Whipple could unveil something he’s never done before in his time at UMass.

After practice Tuesday, Whipple said that both quarterbacks Ross Comis and Andrew Ford could share the snaps in the Minutemen’s matchup with the Monarchs.

When asked who the quarterback this week was going to be, Whipple said “probably both of them.”

“They both played really good,” he added. “Both have had some good moments and bad, so I’ll figure it out. They both practiced really well today, so it’s a good problem.”

Comis was named the starter by Whipple during summer camp and played the first two weeks of the season against No. 25 Florida and Boston College before suffering an injury that sidelined him for the next two weeks.

In his absence, Ford led the Minutemen to its first win of the year against Florida International and threw for four touchdowns against Southeastern Conference opponent Mississippi State.

But with both dressing against Tulane, Ford got the starting nod only to have Comis replace him in the fourth quarter, where he led the UMass offense on two fourth-quarter scoring drives after Ford and the rest of the Minutemen only generated 83 yards of total offense.

“We were going to play Ross last week a little bit, it’s just how the game goes,” Whipple said. “They both are good players so we’ll just see how the week goes really. We’ll see how tomorrow’s practice goes.”

Comis said that he was feeling 100 percent Tuesday after receiving treatment multiple times per day for the past three and a half weeks.

Now that Comis is back on the field, he said he was willing to share dual-quarterback responsibilities with Ford for the benefit of the team.

“Obviously you like to get in rhythms, but me and Andrew have talked about this. It’s something that we knew. We are both starting guys and we can both provide valuable minutes to the team,” Comis said. “Whoever is playing really well is going to help the team out, whichever one of us that is.”

Ford took questions before both Comis and Whipple Tuesday and was not asked about the nature of sharing the quarterback position.

Instead, Ford said he’s looking to move on from his subpar performance against the Green Wave.

“It’s just a long game,” Ford said of the lessons he’s taken from last Saturday. “It’s one of those games where you just have to forget about the play before, whether it’s good or bad, and take it one play at a time. You just need to keep a positive attitude when you’re out there, no matter what.”

Andrew Cyr can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @Andrew_Cyr.

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