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Texas interested in possible Eastern Washington QB transfer Vernon Adams

The FCS star is one of the most intriguing potential graduate transfers.

James Snook-USA TODAY Sports

The Texas Longhorns are one of the teams interested in possible Eastern Washington Eagles quarterback Vernon Adams, his high school coach told the Oregonian.

If the two-time Walter Payton award runner-up for the honor of being the best player in the FCS actually decides to transfer for his final season of eligibility, there will be numerous suitors. According to Dean Herrington, the aforementioned high school coach of the 6-0, 190-pound Adams, the UCLA Bruins also expressed interest in Adams, as have the Oregon Ducks.

Adams is interested in the Ducks as well, having taken an official visit to Eugene in late January.

So when will Adams decide about his future? Eastern Washington head coach Beau Baldwin said on Wednesday that he hopes a meeting will happen Monday and expects his quarterback to make a decision soon thereafter.

With the Horns set to hold an all-out quarterback competition this spring between the only two scholarship quarterbacks on campus -- Tyrone Swoopes and Jerrod Heard -- speculation has run rampant that head coach Charlie Strong and his staff will pursue further options by evaluating the graduate transfer market.

Asked about the situation on Wednesday, Strong couldn't really say much about specific players.

"When you talk about the grad market, you don't know because they have to contact us," he said. "You really don't know because you don't know what's really out there right now in the grad market. There's got to be someone that's going to fit your needs."

Since Strong and his staff can't speak to Adams directly right now, his high school coach is serving as the intermediary in taking recent calls from the Bruins and Longhorns.

But despite coming from the FCS level, Adams certainly fits those needs for Texas even though he's undersized. His average of 9.0 yards per offensive play and 10.28 yards per passing attempt set FCS records in 2013, as well did his 11 games of 300 yards or more of total offense and 10 games with at least 300 passing yards. In all, he established 19 school records, eight Big Sky Conference marks and six FCS records.

He also threw for 55 touchdowns in 2013, an incredible number at any level. While many graduate transfer quarterbacks leave in an attempt to find playing time, Adams is different because he's produced at the highest levels of the FCS.

And how does he do against FBS competition? Adams threw for a school-record seven touchdown passes against Washington last September in amassing 475 yards through the air without a single interception on 31-of-46 passing. The Eagles didn't come out with a win against the Huskies in Seattle, but Adams helped his team hang tough in a wild 59-52 loss that turned late when an Eastern Washington wide receiver lost a fumble late that led to the winning Washington score.

With a still-unproven Heard and the issues Swoopes experienced knowing when to leave the pocket and how to do so, the experience of Adams makes him appealing.

"He worked hard to improve his skills as a quarterback, such as how he is going to beat the blitz and how he is going throw down the field with things crashing around him," Baldwin has said of his quarterback. "Plus the little things, like how he's going to lead. He's taken a lot of hits and has had times when his body isn't feeling great, but he's played through it."

All competition caveats aside, he can also do this:

It's impossible to say at this time if Adams would have any interest in Texas, but since other potential graduate transfers like Ohio State's Braxton Miller and Notre Dame's Everett Golson seem like even greater longshots, Adams is one of the most intriguing possibilities that could be out there.

And the Horns have an advantage over the Bruins and Ducks -- even though the other two schools don't feature returning starters, the Bruins have a five-star early enrolee in Josh Rosen and the Ducks have their own talented early enrollee and a host of other possible starters who have been on campus. In other words, it's arguable that Texas has a more wide-open competition than either of those schools that Adams would be more likely to win.

But first he has to decide if he wants to leave the red field in Cheney he calls home and ply his talents on the FBS level. The guess here is that he does.