After re-aggravating a previous shoulder injury on Saturday in the first half of a 24-10 win over the Iowa State Cyclones, Texas Longhorns quarterback Sam Ehlinger returned to the practice field on Tuesday and threw for the first time since suffering his injury on Saturday, per a report from Burnt Orange Nation’s Wescott Eberts.
Practice just got done today and Texas QB Sam Ehlinger participated, throwing for the first time since Saturday. Coaches were cautious with his volume of throws and the medical staff will continue to monitor his shoulder. #HookEm— Wescott Eberts (@SBN_Wescott) November 21, 2018
In Ehlinger’s second-half absence against Iowa State, junior and former starter Shane Buechele filled in efficiently. Though the offense scored just seven points in the second half, Buechele completed each of his 10 attempts for 89 yards, with one connection being a 27-yard touchdown strike to Lil’Jordan Humphrey.
However, despite how serviceable Buechele was on Saturday, Texas head coach Tom Herman had this to say on Monday when asked why not let Ehlinger rest with a trip to the Big 12 title game potentially looming:
“Because we’re going to play the best players, the players that give us the best chance to win, regardless of opponent. Sam has earned the right that if he is healthy to start the game. He’s proven that he can win really big ball games for us and perform that way, and we’re going to need our best to win.
We are very confident in Shane Buechele, but there is a reason that Sam Ehlinger is our starting quarterback. If our best is healthy, we’re going to play our best.”
With Texas traveling to Lawrence, Kansas on Thursday and kickoff scheduled for 11 a.m CT on Friday, Nov. 23, the Longhorns have a much shorter window than usual to ensure their starter is healthy enough to start. If not, Buechele will make his third major appearance of the season against Kansas. Thus far, Buechele guided Texas to a 23-17 win over Baylor, and helped lead Texas to the finish line in last week’s win.