"With Case, we’d give him a set (of plays) and he’d look at it and call something real quick (at the line),” Holgorsen said. "Where (the quarterback calling plays) really happens is if we call a bad play and he doesn’t think it’s going to work out, we give him the authority to change (the play).”
Hence the critical nature of Harrell’s role.
With Holgorsen in charge of the entire offense, he’s unlikely to be able to invest the time required to properly tutor all five quarterbacks on the roster when the season begins in September. Harrell will have the time and the ability to answer any question and patiently take OSU’s quarterbacks through the new offensive system, step-by-step, play-by-play.
When asked what trait he looks for in a quarterback, Holgorsen’s response was telling.
"The cerebral part of the game,” Holgorsen said. "Being a smart kid and understanding the offense. Being competitive and having a burning desire to win. That may sound clichÃ©, but it’s not.”
Not a rocket arm, not uncanny accuracy, not even the ability to make plays with their feet when a play breaks down.
Intelligence and competitiveness.
"The physical stuff... you can get better at a lot of that stuff,” Holgorsen said. "The thing you can’t get kids better at is what he’s got going upstairs and what his competitive nature is.”