Tate Rodemaker was robbed of an chance to make history

Inflation affects various aspects of our lives, from the cost of groceries to housing prices. However, one group that is feeling the price of inflation in a unique way is backup quarterbacks. In recent years, the demand for backup quarterbacks in college football has skyrocketed, leading to exorbitant prices in the transfer portal.

Last week, Matt Rhule, the head coach of a prominent football powerhouse, made headlines when he stated that “a good quarterback in the portal costs $1 million to $1.5 million to $2 million right now.” This statement highlighted the inflated market for backup quarterbacks, making Rhule sound like a thrifty Chris Rock walking up to Isaac Hayes at a rib joint counter, asking how much for one rib, and then paying for it with a stack of Benjamins.

While this may seem like an exaggeration, the reality is that backup quarterbacks have become highly sought after in the college football landscape. Teams are willing to pay top dollar for a reliable backup who can step in and perform at a high level if the starting quarterback goes down with an injury. This has led to a significant increase in the cost of acquiring a backup quarterback through the transfer portal.

The recent example of Florida State highlights the impact of this inflation. If the team had reached the College Football Playoff, they would have received a $6 million payout from the ACC. However, since they fell short and will be playing in the Orange Bowl, their payout will only be $4 million. This $2 million difference in revenue could have been crucial for the program, but instead, it was lost due to their reliance on a backup quarterback.

The College Football Playoff Committee should have taken the human factor into account when making their decisions. Instead of disregarding Florida State after their starting quarterback, Jordan Travis, went down with an injury, they should have considered the potential of their backup quarterback, Tate Rodemaker. By overlooking Rodemaker, they not only robbed him of a legacy-defining opportunity but also ignored the countless examples of backup quarterbacks rewriting expectations and leading their teams to success.

Throughout history, backup quarterbacks have played a pivotal role in shaping the outcomes of seasons. One notable example is Billy Joe Hobert, who stepped in for the injured Mark Brunell and led Washington to a national title 32 years ago. Imagine if Brunell’s injury had occurred three weeks before the end of the season, and a committee had decided that Miami deserved to be the undisputed national champion? This scenario demonstrates the importance of backup quarterbacks and their ability to alter the course of a season.

One of the challenges that Rodemaker faced was his lack of pedigree. If he had been a former five-star recruit, Florida State would have been given more leeway. However, in his limited playing time, Rodemaker showed promise. Last year, he led Florida State to three touchdowns in a second-half comeback against Louisville after Travis was knocked out. This performance should have been an indication of his potential and the impact he could have had in the College Football Playoff.

The NFL has also witnessed the success of backup quarterbacks. Nick Foles, Jeff Hostetler, and Trent Dilfer are all examples of quarterbacks who spent most of the season as understudies but went on to win Super Bowls. Dilfer, in particular, took over an offense that had endured a five-game touchdown drought and admitted to looking like a high school quarterback in practices. Despite these challenges, he led the Ravens to a Super Bowl victory.

These examples highlight the importance of backup quarterbacks and their ability to step up in crucial moments. In the case of Florida State, the playoff selection committee failed to account for the unpredictable nature of sports and the potential of a backup quarterback to rise to the occasion. While injuries and other factors may justify downgrading a team, it is illogical to assume that a team that has consistently found ways to win would suddenly be unable to do so on the biggest stage.

In conclusion, backup quarterbacks are feeling the price of inflation in today’s college football landscape. The demand for reliable backups has led to skyrocketing prices in the transfer portal. This was evident in the recent case of Florida State, where the team lost significant revenue due to their reliance on a backup quarterback. The playoff selection committee should take the human factor into account and recognize the potential of backup quarterbacks to rewrite expectations and lead their teams to success. After all, an entire chapter of Super Bowls and national champions has been authored by backup quarterbacks, and their impact should not be overlooked.

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