Ehlinger has some unfinished business at Texas. After a resurgent sophomore season in which the Longhorns went 10-4 and upset Georgia in the Sugar Bowl, Ehlinger declared Texas was “back.” Instead, they disappointed with an 8-5 record this season. Now the Longhorns quarterback will get one more chance to deliver Texas the kind of season he envisioned when he joined the program.
Sam Ehlinger learned a hard lesson about making proclamations and decided not to repeat history this year.
For the second straight year, Ehlinger’s Texas Longhorns pulled off an upset in their bowl game with a big win over a higher-ranked team that was disappointed about losing its conference championship game. Last time around, Ehlinger declared after Texas’ win over Georgia that “Texas is back!”
This year, Texas was 7-5 entering their bowl game and still beat Utah 38-10 in the Alamo Bowl. But after the convincing win, Ehlinger decided not to make another big comment.
#Longhorns’ QB @sehlinger3 on what rout of #Utah could mean for #Texas going forward: “I don’t know how to word this. I’m not going to do that again. I’ll leave it that.” Added coach Tom Herman: “Smart move.” (After winning Sugar Bowl last year Ehlinger said Texas was back.)
Texas finished 10-4 last season and entered this season with big expectations. They fell well short of them and it nearly cost Tom Herman his job. Instead, Herman was given the chance to overhaul his staff ahead of a make-or-break 2020. There is no guarantee Ehlinger will be around either, as he is considering entering the NFL Draft.
Expectations are high at Texas, and the Longhorns’ 2019 season is almost certainly going to be viewed as a major step back after a 10-win season in 2018. Quarterback Sam Ehlinger, however, is trying to put Texas’ 7-5 campaign in perspective.
Ehlinger said after the Longhorns’ 49-24 win over Texas Tech that he believes Texas fans would have been very happy with a potential eight-win season if you asked them after the team went 5-7 in 2016.
Sam Ehlinger on Texas at 7-5: "Rome wasn't built in a day. If you had told Texas fans three years ago that we would have seven wins and headed to a bowl game and had a chance to win eight, I think people would be pretty happy … Overall, we did a great job." #HookEm
This probably isn’t going to cut it as an explanation. Expectations were high after the team won 10 games in 2018, and Big 12 contention was the minimum expectation. The school’s athletic director openly said as much. Those expectations were not met, as the team lost to the likes of TCU and Iowa State, neither of which was ranked at the time of the game. Ehlinger is trying to make things look good here, but Longhorns fans expect better than 7-5, especially after the way 2018 went.
The LSU Tigers are going to try to make Sam Ehlinger’s life miserable when they face Texas on Saturday. LSU fans are already doing their part to make the Longhorns quarterback feel that way.
During an appearance Friday on “The Paul Finebaum Show,” ESPN college football reporter Maria Taylor said that LSU fans had gotten a hold of Ehlinger’s phone number and were bombarding him with phone calls and text messages.
LSU’s big game against Texas next week just got a whole lot more interesting.
Tigers linebacker K’Lavon Chaisson has given some bulletin-board material to the Longhorns. Chaisson said on Sunday that he doesn’t view Texas quarterback Sam Ehlinger as a big passing threat but instead more of a dangerous runner.
K'Lavon Chaisson asked about seeing Sam Ehlinger again(they played vs each other in high school in the 6A State Title game in 2015)
Chaisson knows Ehlinger well from when his North Shore High School football team beat Ehlinger’s Westlake squad for the Texas state title in 2015. Ehlinger is a dual-threat QB who rushed for 16 touchdowns last season, but he also passed for 25 touchdowns and only five interceptions. That part of his game should not be overlooked.
Since 2000, 16 of the 19 players to win the Heisman Trophy were quarterbacks. In other words, the best player in college football is usually adjudged to be the nation’s top signal-caller, underlining the importance of the position if a school wants a chance at claiming a conference or national title. Just ask the Oklahoma Sooners, who boast back-to-back Heisman-winning quarterbacks, both of whom played in the College Football Playoff.
Which quarterbacks are going to be the ones competing for those honors this season? Here are the ten best quarterbacks in college football in 2019.
10. Adrian Martinez, Nebraska
Any rebirth of Nebraska football is tied to Martinez, who was handed the quarterback job as a freshman and acquitted himself well. He threw for 2,617 yards and 17 touchdowns while adding 629 rushing yards. A better supporting cast should help those numbers go up, and some have even mentioned him as a potential dark horse Heisman candidate. That may be premature, but given Martinez’s natural talent and Scott Frost’s reputation for developing players, it may be realistic eventually.
9. D’Eriq King, Houston
King suffered a knee injury toward the end of 2018, and his recovery and health will be paramount to him reaching his potential. If King does reach his potential, he’ll easily become one of the country’s most dynamic quarterbacks. As a junior, King threw 36 touchdown passes and added 14 more rushing scores, bringing him to an even 50 on the year despite playing in only 11 games. Dana Holgorsen’s offense has the chance to make him one of the most prolific stat-producers in the entire nation.
8. Jordan Love, Utah State
After passing for 32 touchdowns and 3,567 yards last season, there’s no reason to believe Love won’t be able to turn in a repeat performance in 2019. Ranking as one of the Group of Five’s top quarterbacks, Love had a pair of 400-yard passing games in 2018, and nearly beat Michigan State in East Lansing. He has a new coach in Gary Andersen, but don’t expect that to slow him down as one of the best returning quarterbacks.
7. Shea Patterson, Michigan
Michigan was likely headed for a College Football Playoff appearance last season had they not lost to Ohio State, and that defeat largely was not Patterson’s fault. The senior enters 2019 with a lot of pressure on his shoulders given the prevailing narrative that Michigan is long overdue for a Big Ten title and has the talent to win one. They certainly have the quarterback to do it, as Patterson was good for 2,600 yards last season. The hope is that a more expansive offense will boost Patterson’s numbers and make the team even better.
6. Jalen Hurts, Oklahoma
After an up-and-down Alabama career, Hurts has moved to Oklahoma. Coach Lincoln Riley has made clear that Hurts is expected to compete with Tanner Mordecai for the starting job, but most expect Hurts to win it. Known primarily for his mobility, the key for Hurts will be to show improvement as a passer. However, Riley and Oklahoma’s high-powered approach to offense could make Hurts yet another Oklahoma Heisman candidate. He’d love to make it three years in a row for the Sooners.
5. Sam Ehlinger, Texas
It’s comical to now think that Ehlinger was once part of a quarterback controversy at Texas. Nobody is questioning him now. He racked up 41 total touchdowns in 2018 — 25 passing and 16 rushing — while quarterbacking the Longhorns to their first ten-win season since 2009. The junior is only getting better, and as long as there are no injuries or other issues, a Big 12 title and Heisman consideration is not out of the question for Ehlinger.
4. Justin Herbert, Oregon
Herbert surprised many when he passed on the NFL Draft despite the fact that scouts are said to be drooling over his pro potential. The beneficiary of that decision is Oregon, which will subsequently be able to play one more season with one of the nation’s best quarterbacks. Herbert is a classic pocket passer with size and a big arm, as evidenced by his 63 touchdown passes in three years with the Ducks. Don’t be surprised if he has a 30-touchdown, 3,000-yard season in the pipeline.
3. Jake Fromm, Georgia
Georgia’s second season with Fromm under center wasn’t quite as successful as the first, but it certainly wasn’t down to the quarterback, who continues to develop at an elite level. Fromm posted a 30-touchdown season and improved his completion percentage as a sophomore despite falling short of 3,000 yards. There’s no reason to believe Fromm’s development won’t continue as a junior. A higher national profile could follow if the Bulldogs can make the College Football Playoff.
2. Tua Tagovailoa, Alabama
Tua was everything the Crimson Tide hoped for and then some until a poor performance and injury in the SEC Championship helped derail his Heisman hopes. His season ended with two interceptions against Clemson, where he was outplayed by Trevor Lawrence. Losing that game gives Tagovailoa something to prove, which Nick Saban knows. Tua is entirely capable of making another run at the Heisman, and it’s worth remembering that he fell just 34 yards shy of 4,000 and added 43 passing touchdowns despite the fact that he was rarely playing the entirety of Alabama blowouts.
1. Trevor Lawrence, Clemson
For the bulk of the 2018 season, Tua Tagovailoa and Kyler Murray were dominating the college football quarterback conversation. Lawrence proceeded to make the title game his personal coming out party. The freshman capped off a 3,000-yard season by throwing for 347 yards and three touchdowns against a shell-shocked Crimson Tide defense. With no questions about his starting job and a talented team around him, Lawrence has the chance to surpass those numbers and win a Heisman Trophy as a sophomore. Another national title isn’t out of the question either.
If you think you can rattle Sam Ehlinger over Twitter, think again.
The Texas Longhorns quarterback spoke with the media Tuesday at Big 12 Media Days. He talked about why he isn’t bothered by hate sent his way on Twitter. It’s pretty simple: he doesn’t receive notifications about it.
Texas QB Sam Ehlinger said his Twitter settings will only show notifications from people that he follows. So for all the hate tweets sent his way, “I don’t know.”
Terry Bradshaw has angered some Texas fans for what he said about Longhorns quarterback Sam Ehlinger.
Bradshaw was the commencement speaker on May 25 for his alma mater, Louisiana Tech. He seemed to be trying to pump up Louisiana Tech as he spoke to the audience and brought up the Bulldogs’ first game of the 2019 season against Texas. Seemingly in the process of trying to make the program believe they can compete at the level of the Longhorns, Bradshaw downplayed Ehlinger.
This seemed to be an obvious case to me of a guy rallying his troops rather than just bashing someone else unprompted. The context matters. But Texas fans have still been sparked by the remarks and are left thinking Bradshaw is crazy.
In a vacuum, would Bradshaw say that Ehlinger is not that good? That’s a totally different matter from downplaying Texas while speaking at Louisiana Tech.
Ehlinger emerged as a sophomore, throwing for 3,292 yards, 25 touchdowns and five interceptions while rushing for 482 yards and 16 touchdowns last season. He led Texas to a 10-4 year and big Sugar Bowl win over Georgia, after which he declared Texas was back.
Baker Mayfield continues to make it clear where he stands in the Red River Rivalry.
The former Oklahoma Sooners quarterback spoke with Sports Talk 1400’s Ted Lehman and Tyler McComastook from his football camp in Norman on Wednesday. During the interview, he took some shots at the Texas Longhorns. He said that they’re not “back” yet despite Sam Ehlinger’s proclamation after the Sugar Bowl.
The other comment Mayfield made has to do with him playing at Lake Travis in Austin for high school, while Ehlinger played at rival Westlake, another top football program in Austin.
“Westlake is a great program, but the two best quarterbacks to come out of there are Drew Brees and Nick Foles. Sam can stay down there in Texas,” Mayfield said. “That will stir the pot. He doesn’t like me and I hope he knows I don’t like him either.”
Texas Longhorns quarterback Sam Ehlinger expressed support for a congressional bill that would modify the NCAA’s current definition and allowances for amateur athletes.
Here are the tweets Ehlinger sent in support of the bill:
Within this internship, you risk your short-term and long-term health on a daily basis. You endure this internship with less than a 2% chance to advance in your industry and obtain a full-time paid job.
Rep. Mark Walker of North Carolina plans to introduce legislation next week called the Student-Athlete Equity Act. The bill would call for the NCAA to allow student-athletes to profit off of their image and likeness while they are in school. Current NCAA rules do not allow that.
There are arguments for and against such a bill. In support, there are some student-athletes who achieve star status in college and under current rules have no ability to capitalize on that, which seems unfair. Against it, allowing student-athletes to profit off their name and likeness could open matters up to corruption where money to pay the players is organized through these deals. The idea of amateurism could also be affected; student-athletes are supposed to mostly worry about school and sports, but this might also necessitate student-athletes to make business choices and decisions, like hiring agents, financial managers, and lawyers to handle these deals. That’s a lot for a young student-athlete to have to consider, and the NCAA wants to protect its student-athletes from such matters.