Fajardo shines against Cal with Kaepernick-like plays

Quarterback Cody Fajardo showed a lot of dexterity in making key plays when it was most needed in the game against Cal on Saturday. After watching him play last season, I thought he would turn out to be an ordinary quarterback. Boy, was I wrong!

I can tell he worked extremely hard in the off-season to gain the respect of his teammates. After watching Fajardo buy time in the pocket and extending the play to make a huge throw on the run to Brandon Wimberly in the final moments of the game was reminiscent of Colin Kaepernick’s composure to excogitate a play under pressure. I believe Fajardo will become another great quarterback and make his own history for our program, just like Kaepernick.

It was amazing to see how much his accuracy has improved. To witness him making a play of that magnitude in front of 63,183 fans was brilliant. I remember being home and watching Kaepernick make so many of those types of plays. One in particular was the déjà vu against Cal in 2010 when Nevada beat them at Mackay Stadium.

By Leonel Beas/Nevada Sagebrush
Cody Fajardo handing the rock off to Stefphon Jefferson for one of his 34 carries. Jefferson ran through Cal’s sieve-like defense.

Kaepernick was in shotgun and it looked like he handed it off to the running back going to the middle, but he tucked it in and ran to the right where he exploded for a 27-yard touchdown to extend the lead to 45-31, which ended up being the final score. Fajardo did the same thing and ended up running 49-yards to the right side for his touchdown. Fajardo has an Idoneous skill set, just as Kaepernick did to run the Pistol offense.

Fajardo seemed to have a swagger to his game. It was as if he was a senior playing his final season with an urgency of completing his mission to lead his team to a title. If he brings that same demeanor to our next game, he will put Nevada back on the college football map. I just hope Fajardo can stay consistent because last year he showed flashes of brilliance and fell flat at other times.

The only negative I saw yesterday was that Fajardo and center Matthew Galas were not on the same page when it came to the timing of snapping the ball. They cannot give away opportunities by being in position to score and making silly mistakes that can cost them a game. Fajardo should take Galas to lunch every day to feed his confidence and form the chemistry that will be needed for the remainder of the season.

If they can clean up this mistake, Nevada will compete for the Mountain West title because Fajardo has the potential to be an all-time great, barring injury.

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