“In the past, I’ve really liked to have a starter by the end of spring practice so they can develop leadership through their own workouts during the summer,” Mendenhall said.
Boyd Ivey/Icon SMIRyan Nelson played in seven games in 2009, completing seven of 10 passes with one touchdown. But that won’t be the case this summer because the battle to replace record-setting quarterback Max Hall was too close to call after spring practice.
Three players -- junior Riley Nelson, freshman Jake Heaps and sophomore James Lark -- battled to win the job during spring practice. Mendenhall said Nelson and Heaps had a slight edge over Lark when spring practice ended last week. But Lark, who returned to BYU in December after a two-year LDS mission in St. Petersburg, Russia, remains very much in the hunt.
“I expected Riley to be clearly ahead of the other two, but the other two have surprised me,” Mendenhall said.