In less than a week, lifelong Texas Longhorns fan Quinn Ewers will step onto Campbell-Williams field at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium as the starting quarterback for the program he’s followed since Colt McCoy was throwing touchdowns to Jordan Shipley on the Forty Acres.
“This has obviously been a dream for me. Growing up, I was a huge Longhorn fan and I’m just excited to have the opportunity,” Ewers said on Friday. “God blessed me and I’m just super humbled and excited.”
Head coach Steve Sarkisian met individually with Ewers, a redshirt freshman who spent last season at Ohio State, and redshirt sophomore Hudson Card last week to inform them of his decision to name Ewers the starting quarterback to allow him to receive all the first-team reps over the two weeks before the season opener against Louisiana-Monroe.
“It’s been it’s been a great week for me and the team,” Ewers said. “I feel like once Sark named the starter and whatnot, it’s gotten a little easier for at least me. Obviously, Hudson is a great quarterback and I’m excited to still grow off of each other and now but this week’s been a lot of fun.”
The comfort level established for Ewers with the quarterback competition coming to a close helped him put together a strong week of practice.
“Quinn has had a good week,” Sarkisian said Thursday. “I’ve seen some plays where it’s like we’re starting to take another step with him. Some really big time throws on third down, some of his playmaking in the pocket. He made a nice play in two-minute today using his legs to create an explosive play. We’re starting to make the strides I was hopeful for.”
Putting in extra time after practice throwing with the wide receiver helped the trajectory of Ewers, as well as time spent in the film room learning how to identify coverages that have become more complex than the two or three coverages he would see in high school.
Leadership is one area for growth that Ewers is emphasizing after arriving in January. Former Southlake Carroll teammate Andrej Karic, a backup sophomore tackle, helped introduce Ewers to his new teammates and facilitated the relationships Ewers has been building since.
“I see myself as like a laid back kind of person and just kind of roll with the flow, but obviously, being a quarterback, you can’t always be like that,” Ewers said. “And yeah, it definitely took some time just trying to get to know the guys.”
When Ewers does step onto the field, he expects some of the typical nervousness, but it’s also a moment for which he’s been preparing for a long time even though he hasn’t thrown a pass in a game since he was a junior at Southlake Carroll.
“Excited, not anxious,” Ewers said. “Obviously, there’s going to be butterflies in the locker room, but after that first play it’ll be back to the basics.”