Reporting Matt Leon
Filed underCollege Football, College Sports, Radio.com - Sports, Sports, Syndicated Sports, Syndication
By Matt Leon
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The Villanova football team is on the bye this week as they gear up for their final two games of the regular season.
After winning just two games in 2011, the Wildcats have returned to their usual winning ways here in 2012 with a 6-3 record (4-2 in the Colonial Athletic Association). Perhaps the main reason for this turn around is the play of redshirt freshman quarterback John Robertson.
The Paramus, New Jersey native is completing 61% of his passes and he has already thrown for 1,496 yards and 12 touchdowns with just five interceptions. A dual threat, Robertson has also rushed for 741 yards and another 10 touchdowns (Villanova rushed for nine touchdowns as a team in 2011). Not bad for a guy who actually started the season as the back-up.
The Wildcats came out of training camp with Chris Polony as their starter, but with the idea that Robertson would also get some chances. However, it didn’t take long for Robertson to grab the job outright and he says once he did, it didn’t tale long for him to feel like it was his offense.
“Right when I got in (in the season opener) at Temple,” Robertson tells KYW Newsradio. “Right when they said, ‘You’ve got the second half’. That’s the only way I could think about it so I could be successful.”
In the short time that Robertson has been the starter, he has emerged as a top talent in the Colonial Athletic Association. He says it has been a wild couple of months, but he is taking the success in stride.
“I have a lot of confidence in myself and especially with my team,” Robertson says. “They really help out. I’m set up for success with the coaches, the plays called and the line, they’ve really been opening up things for me in the passing and running game.”
Robertson has had some really memorable performances this season. On October 13th, in the Wildcats signature win down at then #3-ranked Old Dominion, he rushed for 189 yards (school record for a quarterback) and three scores and added 151 yards through the air with another touchdown. Then this past weekend in a 49-35 loss to #19 Towson, Robertson threw for four scores and rushed for another touchdown. These games have showcased what he feels is his biggest strength right now.
“I just want to say being a dual-threat quarterback,” Robertson says. “Being able to run the ball, with our team, we have a great line so teams have to stack the box. Then when they do that we have to throw the ball and usually we’ll be open because our receivers are really great.”
The playoffs are a distinct possibility for the Wildcats this season with Robertson under center. Needless to say, he is having a lot more fun than he did last year as he red-shirted during a long 2-9 campaign.
“It’s 100 percent different,” Robertson says. “Just being on the sidelines last year, you just kind of forget how awesome it is to play football. And how lucky I am to be able to play this game.”
Robertson and the rest of the Villanova squad return to the field on November 10th, when they host James Madison.
You can follow Matt on Twitter @mattleonkyw.