When former Poland quarterback Colin Reardon decided in February of 2012 to continue his playing career at Kent State he did so thinking he that he would have a great chance to play early in his tenure.
Well, when the Flashes begin the 2013 campaign on Aug. 29 against Liberty, Reardon will get his wish. A year removed from being redshirted, Reardon was recently named Kent's starting signal caller by head coach Paul Haynes. Reardon will replace the extremely successful Spencer Keith as Kent's main kid behind center. According to coach Haynes, the Poland product won the QB competition due to the intangibles he brings with him on the field.
"(Reardon) was ahead in what I call the 'it' factor," Haynes blogged on the official Kent State website.
Reardon had "it" ever since Poland head coach Mark Brungard anointed him his starter five years ago. Not only did Colin collect almost every award and accolade available in his days at Poland, he also rewrote the record books by tossing the ball for more than 4,500 yards and 40 touchdowns. Coach Brungard was so comfortable with Colin playing quarterback because he also possessed those same types of "it" things that coach Haynes referred to.
"(Reardon) is a kid I handed the torch to and said lead this team," Brungard mentioned the day Reardon signed his letter-of-intent to attend Kent. "He embraced that. He's a great leader and a great person."
Great is something Reardon will not necessarily need to be when he directs the Flashes' offense this fall. Kent already has upperclassmen offensive weapons in running backs Dri Archer and Trayion Durham so Reardon's responsibility will be to get the ball in their electrifying hands as often as possible. It may be a stretch to call Colin a "game manager" at this point, but it is certain that if he keeps his mistakes to a minimum there will be a better chance for him to stay behind center all season. There was a heated battle for the prime position this summer between Reardon and senior David Fisher so the ex-Bulldog will need to reinforce coach Haynes' decision every day in practice or risk losing his prestigious role.
"The person's will have to continue to earn (the starting quarterback job)," continued Haynes in his blog. "You're the starting quarterback against Liberty, but (game two against Bowling Green) we'll see."
Right now Kent faithful will see a lot of the 6-foot, 1-inch, 205-pound gunslinger from Poland. Reardon's ability to run the ball as well as toss it also gave him a slight advantage over his competition because it gives the Flashes a three-headed rushing attack to pester opposing defenses.
At times, the intelligence Reardon shows on the gridiron makes it look as if he has three heads of his own. If he continues weekly to display those smarts in conjunction with his running and passing skills and his command of the huddle, it'll prove that coach Haynes made an intelligent choice for his quarterback too.