QB Battle: Who Will Start for the Gators, Harris or Grier?


After several seasons of ineptitude at the quarterback position, the Florida Gators have quite an intriguing battle for the starting spot this summer.

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True sophomore Treon Harris and redshirt freshman Will Grier will push each other to see who will be under center on the night of September 5th.

Coach Jim McElwain turned Colorado State QB Garrett Grayson into an NFL-ready quarterback, so hopefully he can work that same magic for one of the young Gator shot-callers.

Related: Will Kelvin Taylor become the SEC’s most improved back? 

Who will step up to nab the starting spot?

The Case for Treon Harris

Without a doubt, Treon Harris is the more experienced of the two QBs. Last season, Harris appeared in nine games

Nov 29, 2014; Tallahassee, FL, USA; Florida Gators quarterback Treon Harris (3) runs during the third quarter against the Florida State Seminoles at Doak Campbell Stadium. Florida State Seminoles defeated Florida Gators 24-19. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

for the Gators, starting the last six games, while registering a record of 4-2 in those starts. In those nine games, Harris threw for 1,019 yards, nine TD’s and four INT’s, while adding 332 yards and three TD’s on the ground.

At a glance, those numbers seem relatively impressive. However, keep in mind Harris only completed 49.5% of his passes and attempted more than 12 passes just twice. When the Gators needed Harris to lead the offense through the air, with the Florida State game for example, he completed just 13 of 32 attempts and threw two interceptions.

Harris did have several moments where he shined during the season. In his second appearance of the season, Harris entered the game in the fourth quarter, with the Gators trailing Tennessee 9-0. He would lead two scoring drives and register 41 total yards in the final quarter to help Florida beat the Vols 10-9.

Later in the year, in his second start of the season, Harris led the Gators to a dominant win over Vanderbilt. Harris completed 13 of 21 passes for 215 yards, added 49 yards and two TD’s on the ground to lead Florida to a 24-point win.

The Case for Will Grier

Now, we take a look at the five-star quarterback from the 2014 recruiting class, Will Grier. In his career at Davidson

Day in North Carolina, Grier threw for nearly 15,000 yards, 195 touchdown passes, and added nearly 3,000 rushing

yards with 31 scores on the ground.

Last season, Grier took a redshirt season and didn’t appear in any games. The first action that Florida fans saw Grier play in was the 2015 Spring Game. Grier completed eight of eleven attempts for 136 yards and looked comfortable under center in Coach McElwain’s offense.

One of Grier’s advantages in this quarterback battle is his adeptness in a pro-style offense while Harris is the more athletic, dual-threat quarterback that suits a spread and read-option system.

Apr 11, 2015; Gainesville, FL, USA; Florida Gators quarterback Will Grier (7) throws the ball during the first half at the Orange and Blue Debut at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports


It’s a long summer and the Gators will have the next two months to sort out the quarterback position, but there is no doubt the program needs one of these two signal callers to step up and produce.

Currently, Grier seems to have the upper hand due to his skill set but there is no doubt Harris gained valuable SEC experience last season. It will be quite intriguing to watch these two young teammates push each other and battle it out to be the Florida Gators’ starting quarterback.

What do you think? Who will start for the Gators on Opening Day? Let us know what you think!

Next: Will Jonathan Bullard Lead the Gators Defense in 2015?