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Countdown to Kickoff: #99 QB Joe Spaziani

Spaziani may not see the field as a QB, but there could be other roles for him.

Virginia Media Relations

Position: QB
Height: 6’2”
Weight: 210
Year: Sophomore
Hometown: Hingham, Ma
Twitter: @JoeSpaziani

Walk-on quarterbacks do not end up getting much playing time -- no surprise there. Quarterbacks who break their leg during their senior year of HS oftentimes do not even end up getting an opportunity to walk-on. Joe Spaziani, though, is a different case. Joe’s father, Frank, was an assistant coach for the Hoos under George Welsh, including the defensive coordinator for 6 years. He was the head coach at Boston College from 2009-2012 (and briefly in 2006 as interim head coach). He also coached in the Canadian Football League and is currently the defensive coordinator for the New Mexico State Aggies.

Though his father never suited up for the Cowboys, he was briefly a member of their organization and also was drafted by the Cleveland Indians. His sister is a volleyball player at UCONN and his brother is a youth golf champion. In other words, there’s some serious athleticism in the Spaziani family.

Despite, perhaps, not being an ideal candidate to play QB for the Hoos, Joe has some serious football chops. He can be an important member of the team without setting foot on the field — last year, he was the scout team player of the week leading up to the UCLA game.

That’s not to say that Joe can’t play, or that he’s on just because of his father. Between his junior season and the 3 games of his senior season prior to the leg injury, he threw for 2200 yards and rushed for nearly another 1000. He also played safety, and lettered in baseball and basketball.

Joe spent much of the offseason working at long snapper, which is smart for someone who likely won’t see the field as a QB. Getting work in elsewhere to fill any needs of the team is the type of action that garners the respect of coaches and teammates.

Here is a video of Joe during the 3 games of his senior year prior to the injury. We already know he's not a real QB prospect, so take the video with a grain of salt.

For one thing, Spaziani moves pretty well both inside and outside the pocket. In fact, he moves well enough that his team runs some triple option. He has good mechanics, but only a decent arm. Sadly, it is impossible to tell how well he makes his reads from a highlight reel.

If Spaziani were bigger or quicker, he’d be a better prospect (of course, you could say that about a lot of guys). Spaziani certainly has football in his blood and he’s a very good athlete. That’s not enough to get him onto the field at QB, but it could be enough to get him onto the field somewhere before his career is over.

Also, his profile picture on virginiasports.com shows some amazing facial hair.