Even though there's less than two weeks before the season opener, the Eastern Kentucky University coaching staff still isn't ready to name a starting quarterback.
Austin Scott, Parker McKinney, Dakota Allen and Conor Blount all saw significant action on Saturday morning at Roy Kidd Stadium during the team's final intra-squad scrimmage of training camp. Each QB had a touchdown pass as the offense didn't commit a turnover in mostly situational, but full-contact action.
"They are still competing, for sure," first-year EKU offensive coordinator Austin Adams said. "There's been a couple of guys who have been more consistent than the others, but they've all competed very well this camp, especially this past week. They've all come on strong."
The competition could very well continue right up until the season opener, which is set for Aug. 29 at home against Valparaiso.
All four quarterbacks have started at the Division I level and all had strong performances on Saturday.
Blount opened the scrimmage with a scoring drive that he capped with a shovel pass to Jason Lewis for a touchdown. The Oregon State transfer than scrambled into the end zone on the two-point conversion.
On the next possession, Parker McKinney hit Jaret Pogliano over the middle for a touchdown.
The redshirt junior wide receiver caught a very similar TD pass from Scott a few minutes later.
Allen connected with Jerome Gross for a touchdown, while Tyris Dickerson and Ellis Cain added rushing TDs.
"I thought there was a lot of good football played out on the field," EKU coach Mark Elder said. "There was just a little bit more sloppiness than I would have liked to have seen. We took care of the football well offensively, which I'm pleased about. There were more deadball penalties than I would have liked to seen. I think that can be attributed to being tired. We're at the tail end of camp. At the end of camp they should be tired. They've been practicing for a while, playing physical football and the guys are worn down. We've got a couple of days off coming up for the guys."
That break will also give the coaching staff a chance to watch film and evaluate the quarterback situation.
"They've had a great attitude," Adams said of the four quarterbacks. "They help each other out. They pull for each other. They are like a family and they want what is best for the team. I love the development and progress they've made."
Blount and McKinney were at the top of the depth chart that was released to the media earlier this month.
Blount started the scrimmage, but only saw action in two series. The redshirt junior joined the team in January, went through spring practice and played in the Maroon-White game.
The Wisconsin native appeared in 13 games across three seasons at Oregon State and started six games in 2018.
The newcomer has fit in well to the system of EKU's first-year offensive coordinator.
"He's done a good job getting to know everyone and getting along with everyone," Adams said.
The other three quarterbacks in the competition all started for the Colonels at times last season.
McKinney played in the final three games, leading EKU to three-straight victories. He had 608 yards passing and five touchdowns (four passing, one rushing), with just one interception.
On Saturday, he led the Colonels on two scoring drives.
Scott also got EKU in the end zone a pair of times in the final scrimmage of training camp.
Scott appeared in six games last season (one start) and had four touchdowns with one interception. Allen started six times in 2018 and had one touchdown and one INT.
The Colonels used four quarterbacks last season - because of both injury and ineffectiveness.
Adams certainly doesn't want that same scenario to play out again, but the former Midwestern State offensive coordinator isn't opposed to using multiple quarterbacks in his first season at EKU.
"I've been with programs where we had one guy and he led us to a championship. I've also been in programs where we had multiple guys who led us to championships," Adams said.