Notre Dame entered the 2021 season with a starting quarterback: Wisconsin transfer Jack Coan. Now entering Week 6 in a gut-check game at Virginia Tech, Fighting Irish coach Brian Kelly has to settle what has become a quarterback carousel and choose a starter from one of three players: Coan, second-year freshman Drew Pyne and true freshman Tyler Buchner. 

Playing at Virginia Tech's Lane Stadium following a 24-13 loss to Cincinnati in Week 5 isn't exactly the best time to be reshuffling the QB depth chart. Nevertheless, the competition remains open -- at least publicly. Kelly said this week that "the guys know" who will start at quarterback against the Hokies, but he declined to say who it will be.

"Going on the road in the environment we're in was a factor," Kelly said, per Irish Illustrated. "Mobility is a bit of a factor. It needed to be evaluated. Then, certainly, grading out. I think from our overall perspective, of the guys, who gives us the best chance to win? This is still about winning football games. When we added all those things up, that's how we came up with a decision."

Through five games, a Notre Dame offensive line that saw three starters from last year's team selected in the first three rounds of the NFL Draft has allowed nearly as many sacks (22) as it did all of last season (25). The running game has also screeched to a halt, despite the presence of superstar running back Kyren Williams, leaving the Fighting Irish in dire need of an offensive spark.