“Oh, God yes.”
That was the answer Charlie Strong gave earlier in the day when he was asked if true freshman quarterback Shane Buechele would see the field this season. Several hours after that interview aired, Buechele backed up that strong, unequivocal response.
Armed with the knowledge that these are numbers coming out of a glorified scrimmage, Buechele (pictured, No. 16) was the star of the day as he, at least statistically, outplayed senior Tyrone Swoopes (pictured, No. 18) by a wide margin. In a spring finale that was called at halftime because of weather, Buechele completed 22-of-41 passes for 299 yards, two touchdowns and zero interceptions while Swoopes, considered to be the co-frontunner for the starting job along with Jerrod Heard, stumbled to a 4-16, 71 yards, no touchdowns, two interceptions day.
With Heard sidelined for the remainder of the spring with a shoulder injury, Buechele has made significant progress in what had initially been a five-player race. Exiting spring, it appears that five-man battle has been whittled to three: Buechele, Swoopes and Heard.
Buechele, an early enrollee, has the kind of recruiting pedigree that suggests he could make an immediate impact. A four-star member of this year’s class, Buechele was rated as the No. 5 dual-threat quarterback in the country by Rivals.com.
Whether Buechele will get the opportunity to immediately back up that impressive résumé on the field remains to be seen, but he’s certainly taken a big step in that direction the last couple of weeks. One thing seems certain: Strong would be more than open to a true freshman guiding his offense if he comes out on top in the competition.
#Texas‘ Strong on possibly starting Buechele in fall: “I would be comfortable if he wins the job. Even though a frosh, enuf around him now”
— Jimmy Burch (@Jimmy_Burch) April 16, 2016