Point-Counterpoint: When, if ever, should David Pindell be benched? 


Quarterback David Pindell scrambles during a game against URI on Sept. 15, 2018. (Eric Wang/ The Daily Campus)

UConn senior quarterback David Pindell is UConn’s leading passer at 116 completions on 194 attempts for 1255 yards. More impressively, he is also their leading rusher with 664 yards on 116 carries and seven touchdowns. If he was a wide receiver, who knows? What we’re saying is David Pindell is good. However, the team around him is not, and the sum of their talent has only yielded one win. There are still a couple winnable games on the schedule, but at this point, winning may be a moot point. Should Pindell be pushed aside for Marvin Washington or Steve Krajewski in order to prepare for the next era of UConn football? 

Matt Barresi: As I said at our department meeting on Sunday night, I like watching David Pindell run. Aesthetically, it is very pleasing. In fact, it is just about the only enjoyable thing in watching UConn football. Pindell has been very dynamic for UConn. He has bailed them out time and time again, and his creation abilities are what open up opportunities for everyone else. He has shown so far he is clearly their best option at the position, yet it is time for Edsall to sit him down, or better yet, reallocate him.

I don’t really care about wins anymore. This UConn team isn’t going bowling or anything. Fine, we can start him against UMass so that we can win on homecoming and save grace against a regional rival. The fact is that this season is a sunk cost. It is over. Done. Kaput. In terms of results, nothing that could be reasonably attained is meaningful. It would be a fallacy to keep going with Pindell at quarterback. The Sunk Cost Fallacy (see what I did there?) is saying that we invested in Pindell, we ought to play it out. No! UConn football has a future, I think. They have been gashed and gashed again but this UConn defense could be respectable one day. But for them to go anywhere they will need the right quarterback. I love Pindell, but it is time to start seasoning Washington and/or Krajewski. Start moving forward, as painful as it may be. 

Michael Logan: I don’t think benching Pindell sends the right message to the locker room. Despite the poor record and weekly drubbings that the team goes through, Pindell has been a bright spot and a reason for fans to not change the channel when all hell breaks loose. Head coach Randy Edsall and his staff know this, and it is probably why Pindell will remain the starter for the rest of the season. His stats aren’t exactly eye-popping, but watching him is a different story. His speed and agility from the quarterback position leave little to be desired.  

If the team decides to bench starters, maybe it should come on the defensive side of the ball. But it should definitely not be from their lone bright spot. If Pindell’s play falters, then maybe that should be the time to give Washington a shot at quarterback.  

Barresi: That’s a valid point about the signal it sends to the team, but have you considered other signals such a move would send? It would tell Washington or Krajewski that we have confidence in him and that he’s the guy going forward. It would tell their teammates the same things. It would inform a distraught fanbase that we are focusing on the future, which is the right thing to do. 

I like Pindell. He doesn’t have to be benched. Put him at running back, he would probably be an upgrade over Zavier Scott anyways. Seasoning can be valuable and important. The action Pindell saw down the stretch last year is a factor as to why. Look at the NFL. Baker Mayfield and Josh Rosen are only marginal upgrades, if any, over Tyrod Taylor and Sam Bradford. But that’s not the point. Those guys are the future and the franchises are making sacrifices because they are looking at the long term. The Patriots are notorious for thinking long-term, and they’re the best dynasty in sports. Imagine coming out the gate raring to go because Washington is comfortable? That is a real possibility. Embrace it. This year is lost anyways. 

Logan: This is a solid argument, but what if Washington or Krajewski starts and falters? Then the fans, the entire team and recruits will expect the team to be the same as this year—maybe even worse. Washington may very well be the answer for the future, but to put him in now, and have his play not be where it needs to be, might hurt his confidence going into next season. The team should not look to create a problem or a controversy with one of the only positions that they are doing well with. Pretty much, what I am trying to say is, if it ain’t broke don’t fix it. 

Let Washington go into next season, healthy and confident as the starter. There is no reason to risk him suffering a serious injury or damaging his confidence. While this season is pretty much over, there is no reason to put next season in jeopardy as well. 

Michael Logan is the sports editor for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at michael.logan@uconn.edu.

Matt Barresi is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at matthew.barresi@uconn.edu.

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