September 2, 2006

Colt in command

What did we learn about the quarterbacks, particularly Colt McCoy?

I predicted earlier in the week that Colt McCoy would perform well and complete more than 60 percent of his passes in throwing for 200 yards or more. Those were some lofty expectations for a quarterback playing in his first game, but McCoy answered the call and he actually far surpassed what even I thought he would do.

For the game, the former 2A all-stater completed 12-of-19 passes for 178 yards and three scores. He added another 38 yards and a touchdown on the ground, including a beautiful 27-yard scamper in which he avoided the rush and showed great vision once he crossed the line of scrimmage.

Longhorn fans have been spoiled by the performances provided Vince Young over the past couple of years, but let's put Saturday's showing by McCoy into perspective. It's extremely rare that a freshman quarterback starts for a top tier program like Texas, and there are usually as many valleys as there are peaks.

Take, for example Rhett Bomar, who was regarded as the country's top quarterback prospect coming out of high school in 2004. In his first start last year, also as a redshirt freshman, Bomar hit on just 5-of-13 passes while throwing two interceptions against zero touchdowns. In fact, Bomar had only one game last year where he threw more than one touchdown, and it came in the Sooners' last regular-season game. But enough of the comparisons to Bomar … that doesn't do McCoy justice on or off the field.

As expected, the coaches didn't necessarily ask McCoy to make a lot of difficult throws, and most of his stuff was underneath the secondary. But you can't take away from the fact that he made the most of his opportunities and put the ball where it needed to be, giving his receivers a chance to make a play. Really, McCoy forced only one pass the entire day.

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