Sam Ehlinger Named Texas' Starting QB vs. Maryland over Shane Buechele

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistAugust 20, 2018

Texas Longhorns quarterback Sam Ehlinger (11) looks to throw during the team's Orange-White intrasquad spring college football game, Saturday, April 21, 2018, in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Eric Gay/Associated Press

Texas Longhorns head coach Tom Herman told reporters Monday that Sam Ehlinger is likely to serve as the team's starting quarterback against Maryland and received the majority of the first-team reps Monday, according to Anwar Richardson of OrangeBloods.com.

Ehlinger and Shane Buechele had been battling for the starting quarterback position this summer.

Ehlinger started six games for the Longhorns last season, per ESPN Stats & Information, while Buechele started seven. Ehlinger generally impressed more on the stat sheet, however:

  • Ehlinger: 1,915 passing yards, 11 touchdowns, seven interceptions, 57.5 completion percentage.
  • Buechele: 1,405 passing yards, seven touchdowns, four interceptions, 64.3 completion percentage.

Herman noted Ehlinger has improved his play during the offseason.

"He's throwing the ball a lot better. He's sitting in the pocket much more comfortably," he said, per Spectrum News Austin's Sports Night. "Let's make no mistake—Shane Buechele had a great camp. Great camp. Didn't do, really, anything wrong. ... It was just a matter of, who do we feel gives you the best chance to win in the first game? We'll see if we're right."

For a Texas team that went 7-6 last season and hasn't won 10 games since 2009, reaching just one bowl game in the past three years, getting steady production from the quarterback position is key.

If Ehlinger falters, he'll have Buechele nipping at his heel—a solid backup plan for the Longhorns. But for the time being, Ehlinger is steering the ship.

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