In August, Lee Hull put all of his eggs in Robert Council’s basket when the rookie head coach tabbed the redshirt senior as Morgan State’s starting quarterback, and not even a poor showing in Saturday’s 15-14 loss to Norfolk State has changed Hull’s opinion.
Council had his worst performance as a passer on Saturday, failing to complete 15 of his 19 attempts and gaining just 38 yards. He also lost a fumble on the Spartans’ 1-yard line after a 12-yard run on the opening drive of the game for the Bears (2-3, 1-1 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference).
“Obviously, it wasn’t his best performance of the year,” Hull said Tuesday during his weekly conference call arranged by the league. “Robert is a very, very proud player. So he knows that he didn’t have a great game, but it’s not all on him as to why we lost the game. It’s not one person. We’re a team, and we win as a team and we lose as a team. So we’re not putting it all on Robert. I know that’s what a lot of people want to do, always pinning it on the quarterback. But it’s not just the quarterback. I know Robert’s going to study hard this week, and he won’t make those same mistakes.”
While Council ranks ninth among 10 league quarterbacks in passing average (113.2 yards), he does lead the group in passing touchdowns (six) and is tied for fifth in rushing average (72.6).
Council and redshirt sophomore running Herb Walker Jr. – who ranks eighth in the Football Championship Subdivision in rushing average (142.4) – helm a Morgan State rushing attack that ranks 10th in the country after averaging 259.8 yards. Council’s complementary work with Walker has captured the attention of Florida A&M; coach Earl Holmes, whose Rattlers (0-4, 0-0) are tied for 91st in the country in points allowed (34.5) and 58th in yards surrendered (377.3).
“They’ve got a 1-2 punch there,” Holmes said. “Walker is an excellent running back and Council can run it as well as he can throw it. So you’ve got to pick your poison. But right now, you’ve got to say that in order to get the W, you’ve got to stop the run. Those guys are averaging 260 yards. So you want to make them beat you in the air. But you’ve got to make sure that the quarterback is uncomfortable back there. If he’s comfortable, he can throw it, and he has a very strong arm.”