Sam Ehlinger has a grip on the Texas quarterback job, after an impressive 2018 campaign. The Longhorns have waited a long time for a clear QB1 to emerge.
He's going to miss a bit of time this spring though, unfortunately. According to Anwar Richardson, Ehlinger has come down with a fever.
He was out for today's practice, and will miss the team's first scrimmage of the spring on Saturday. Hopefully this isn't a much longer term issue.
Sam Ehlinger's absence could present an opportunity for young Texas quarterbacks Casey Thompson and Roschon Johnson.
Thompson, who flirted with a transfer this off-season before ultimately electing to stay in Austin, has already started to get some first team reps.
His classmate Cameron Rising elected to transfer to Utah, while former starter Shane Buechele left as a grad transfer to SMU. That leaves Thompson as the QB2, and Tom Herman wants to get him time with the first string, to start to develop chemistry and get better live looks for him.
“I think we have got to get him some reps with the ones because sometimes — especially in the spring when your numbers are limited and you’re still waiting on most of that freshman class to come in — with the twos it can get ugly at times with a snapped ball snapping over your head, guys running right through the gaps and missed assignments. So we’re going to slowly start working him in with the ones just so we can evaluate him a little bit more. But he’s been doing great so far.”
Johnson, a four-star member of the class of 2019, enrolled in January, and the three current scholarship guys have reportedly formed a tight bond. From the San Antonio Express-News:
“I think you saw him last year really focusing on himself,” Herman said. “This year he’s focusing on everybody. The whole people in glass houses kind of deal, get your house in order before you start talking to other people.
“I think he’s confident that his guys believe in his ability to play. Now he can take the next step as a leader which is mentoring some other guys.”
Ultimately, barring an unfortunately circumstance, this is Ehlinger's job come the fall, but the team would do well to make sure it has prepared depth at the position.