DJ Can’t Afford To Be Looking Over His Shoulder At Aidan Chiles

By STEVEN VAUGHAN, 750 THE GAME

The buzz around DJ Uiagalelei has waned a bit since the former five-star prospect transferred into Oregon State from Clemson.

Sure, DJ is still learning the Beavers playbook. And he showed progress throughout spring ball. But perhaps a bigger part of the dynamic has less to do about DJ’s lack of headlines, and more due to the emergence of freshman Aidan Chiles.

Between DJ, Chiles, and the returning Ben Gulbranson, the Beavers have a QB competition on their hands.

Greg Biggins is the national recruiting analyst for 247 sports. He joined the Bald Faced Truth with John Canzano and talked about how good Uiagalelei can be with the Beavers because of all of his tools.

“The biggest thing for DJ, and this is going back to high school, is just processing the game very, very rapidly,” Biggins said. “He’s got the arm. He’s a big strong kid. He can run when he has to. He can extend plays when he needs to. As big as his arm is, he can take some off.”

Biggins said he likes the fit for DJ at Oregon State much better then the fit at Clemson.

“It just wasn’t a great fit for what he likes to do. And I think Oregon State is. That’s the big thing. He gets back there and processes the game fast. He’s going to deal. I honestly believe that.”

As for Chiles, he seems like the quarterback of the future in Corvallis. But Biggins says Jonathan Smith needs to announce DJ as the starting quarterback or it could turn into a Clemson situation all over again.

“If you’re a quarterback, you have to know that you’re the guy. You don’t want to be looking over your shoulder. He had Cade Klubnik at Clemson. Everyone knew Cade was going to be the guy eventually.”

Biggins said just like with Chiles at Oregon State, the hype for the Klubnic at Clemson started early.

“It seemed like almost for Klubnic at spring ball it was how soon before he’s going to be the starter? And you can’t play quarterback that way if you’re DJ.”

The hype around Aidan Chiles is warranted. He looks like he may be the best thrower of the ball. He’s the most athletic. But he is only 17 years old and needs some seasoning and experience. The Beavers brought in DJ Uiagalelei for a reason —  to be the starting quarterback. But for now it seems like an open competition for the starting job down in Corvallis, ahead of a very important season.

Listen to the interview with Greg Biggins in the podcast below. Catch the Bald Faced Truth with John Canzano weekdays 3-6 p.m. in Portland exclusively on 750 The Game.

@steven_von

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