Some people might question being excited about a quarterback
battle, but as coaches always say, “Competition brings out the best in
Well the Red Raider quarterback battle might be short one
participant if the back injury to sophomore Michael Brewer proves to be severe
enough to sideline him for a considerable amount of time.
If Brewer is out of the mix for the foreseeable future that
leaves three gunslingers left on the roster.
Of course true freshman Davis Webb has garnered the most
attention among the three quarterbacks, which include Baker Mayfield and
Clayton Nicholas as well.
You can spend
all day comparing arm strength, football IQ and any other parameter that is
measurable, but the one similarity between all three is they are all freshman.
Nicholas redshirted in 2012 and was a member of the scout
team, while Webb and Mayfield played their senior campaigns at Prosper High
School and Lake Travis High School, respectively.
Amount of experience on a college football field between all
three equals zero and that’s what will really make the difference at the end of
the day between an eight-win season and a five-win year.
Now by any means just if Brewer is sidelined for a portion
of this season that doesn’t mean Tech is just going to spiral downward to a
Just because Webb, Nicholas and Mayfield have no experience
on the collegiate level, they all have been proven winners in the past.
Mayfield is a three-star prospect, which was offered by
Florida Atlantic, New Mexico, Rice and Washington State but turned them all
down to walk-on at Texas Tech.
According to his scouting report he has good ball handling,
decision-making, accuracy and consistency.
Greg Powers called Mayfield, “the type of quarterback who
can sit back in the pocket and sling the ball all over the field.”
Mayfield probably right now checks in third on the depth
chart and above him is Nicholas.
The Abilene, Texas native, was a four-star recruit by both
ESPN.com and MaxPreps and a three-star prospect according to Scout.com.
Nicholas was the only quarterback in the 2012 Red Raider
signing class and had a pretty good senior season for Cooper High School.
Leading the Cougars to the Class 5A Region I Semifinals
against Mansfield Timberview thanks to a 2,956 yard passing season with 26
touchdowns in his senior campaign.
Now Nicholas might be trying to win a starting job at Tech
as a redshirt freshman.
Then finally there is the highly touted true freshman
quarterback, Davis Webb.
Webb, if he gets the start against SMU on August 30, would
not even be a year removed from being in high school before taking his first
But the three-star prospect, according to Scout.com, has
been making noise and turning heads since his arrival on campus in January.
The Prosper, Texas native was the No, 21 quarterback in the
country and the third-best in Texas.
The main weapon that Webb possesses is the skill of being a
dual-threat on the field. In his senior season he threw for 2,658 yards and
tallied 23 touchdowns. When Webb decided to work with his legs, which was 120
times for 589 yards and 12 touchdowns.
So there are the three options if Brewer is not available.
But if he is available for action then the answer is simple. Go with the
Brewer has the experience, although limited, playing in just
nine games in 2012 going 34-for-48 for 375 yards and four touchdowns, but it is
more than any of the other quarterbacks on the roster have.
The sophomore from Lake Travis definitely knows how to win
as he only lost one game as a starting quarterback in high school and was named
All-State in his senior year.
So the battle is on, really with a health Brewer it is
between just him and Webb, but without the experienced quarterback as an option
it really is a wide-open race.
In a few weeks against SMU it might be very much a
possibility that a true freshman, redshirt freshman or walk-on freshman
quarterback could be taking the snaps as the starter against the Mustangs.
Or Brewer might be all right and start the season and the
other quarterbacks don’t see the field unless it’s in a mop up role.
The next few weeks will be key, but all we can do now is let
the battle ensue and see who comes out on the other end of this tunnel wearing
the red and black and taking the first snap on August 30 in Dallas.