Sophomore QB Kaleb Eleby takes snap during WMU's open spring practice

Western Michigan sophomore quarterback Kaleb Eleby has not seen a snap all season long, but that could change in WMU football's final game of the year.

Head coach Tim Lester said last Monday that it is possible Eleby sees some action in the First Responder Bowl on Dec. 30 to build his confidence going into next season.

"I would love to get him out there for a drive or two," Lester said. "A lot of it will depend on how Jon starts the game, Jon's our guy. But it would be a great opportunity to get Kaleb a couple throws, a couple reps to build his confidence going into spring."

If Eleby does see the field against Western Kentucky, he will still be able to redshirt this season due to NCAA rules. Since the NCAA allows players to see action in four or less games and still redshirt, there is nothing to risk with Eleby in terms of him losing an extra year of eligibility. 

While the focus is still on winning the game for Western Michigan, coaches will often keep an eye on the future and make sure their young players develop and get better during bowl preparation.

In 2018, Eleby played in five games after Wassink went down with a season-ending foot injury late in the season. He completed 92-of-147 passes for 1,092 yards with four touchdown passes and three interceptions.

Eleby, a three-star recruit and the highest ranked player in WMU's 2018 class according to 247sports, was the No. 10 ranked player out of the state of Missouri coming out of high school.

In November, Eleby talked to the Western Herald about what he has done this season to prepare himself for the future. 

The Broncos will play Western Kentucky in the First Responder Bowl on Dec. 30 at 12:30 p.m. The game will be televised on ESPN and will be available on the Bronco Radio Network.

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