Wildcats to start quarterback Will Plummer over Gunner Cruz vs. NAU

Sep 13, 2021, 12:43 PM | Updated: 12:44 pm

Two games into the season, the Arizona Wildcats are making a quarterback switch.

Head coach Jedd Fisch told reporters on Monday that Will Plummer will replace Gunner Cruz as the starting quarterback Saturday against Northern Arizona.

“I’m going to start Will and see how that goes, give (third-stringer) Jordan (McCloud) some opportunities as well during the week of practice,” Fisch said. “Plan on playing Will at this point.”

The move follows the Wildcats’ blowout loss to San Diego State at home on Saturday that extended the program’s losing streak to 14 games.

The Wildcats entered the season against BYU with Fisch saying both quarterbacks would play, but Cruz threw all but three of the team’s 48 pass attempts in that loss. Cruz finished 34-of-45 for 336 yards, a touchdown and an interception in the opener.

Cruz again started Saturday in a 38-14 loss to SDSU, but he was pulled after completing 10 of 19 passes for 70 yards, a touchdown and an interception.

Plummer replaced him after Arizona lost two starting offensive linemen and the game was out of hand.

Plummer went 8-of-17 for 109 yards and a touchdown.

“Thought he did a very nice job when he got in there, thought he’s handled himself extremely well throughout the entire process here,” Fisch said Monday. “He went in there, he was tough … made a couple nice wide-field throws to BJ (Casteel), threw a nice ball to Tayvian (Cunningham), both in the end zone and down the field.”

After the game Saturday, Fisch did not have a quarterback plan moving forward but said Cruz was not necessarily benched due to performance reasons. The head coach said that he was protecting Cruz and looking for a kick-start.

“I’ll look at the tape and figure it out,” the coach said Saturday. “Right now, I am completely unsure of what we’re going to do with the quarterback position. One of two of them will start, I know that.

“Different dynamic with Will. He came in and he came in slinging, and I appreciated that.”

Extra point

Fisch said left guard Donovan Laie and left tackle Jordan Morgan will both play against NAU.

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