Texas head coach Charlie Strong has suggested time and time again this offseason he has a concern about the quarterback situation heading into the first game of the season. With the season opener in South Bend, Indiana against Notre Dame creeping closer and closer, Strong is going to have to make a decision soon. If pushed to make that call today, he knows who would be leading the offense for the Longhorns.
“If we had to go play Notre Dame today, it would be Tyrone.”
Tyrone, of course, is Tyrone Swoopes. For those who have been following the offseason quarterback news out of Austin, hearing Strong’s comments about Swoopes today should come as no surprise.
Coming out of the spring practices in April, Strong stated Swoopes was his number one guy at the moment. More recently, Strong said he expects to play both Swoopes and Jerod Heard in the season opener against the Irish, although he noted concerns about playing Heard on the road in the primetime game. Swoopes clearly has the experience edge with Heard sitting out last season as a redshirt player. Swoopes passed for 2,409 yards and 13 touchdowns last fall, but was intercepted 11 times.
Texas kicks off the 2015 season on the road against Notre Dame on September 5 in primetime on NBC.
The start of the 2015 college football season is starting to creep closer and closer, which means quarterback battles are going to really start heating up and quarterback questions are going to have to begin being answered. Unfortunately for most coaches, they do not oversee the type of quarterback dilemma facing Urban Meyer at Ohio State, where he can likely not go wrong with either J.T. Barrett or Cardale Jones. Such is the case for one of Meyer’s former assistant coaches, Charlie Strong at Texas.
Strong’s options are Tyrone Swoopes and Jerod Heard, and both should be expected to see some playing time in the primetime season opener at Notre Dame (on NBC).
“I’m not going to play musical chairs with them,” Strong said during his ESPN car wash tour this week. “They both are going to play. When we line up in South Bend, whoever is going to start, the other guy is going to play also.”
Coming out of spring practices, Strong said Swoopes was his top quarterback. Strong said at the time the thought of going to Notre Dame under the lights in the season opener with a redshirt freshman leading the offense was something he was not looking forward to. Perhaps Strong has changed his tune just slightly and sees the benefit to seeing what each can do in charge of the offense against a talented Notre Dame defense on the road in primetime.
Swoopes will be entering his junior season in Austin. Last fall he led the Longhorns with 2,409 passing yards and 13 touchdowns, but his completion percentage was below 59 percent and he was picked off 11 times.
Regardless of what happens on the visiting sideline, odds are pretty good Notre Dame head coach Brian Kelly will probably feel better about his quarterback situation.