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No preseason Heisman hype for Big 12 quarterbacks
Question of the Day
Gilbert gets his first start for fifth-ranked Texas on Saturday at Rice.
“Those teams that lost players like Texas and Oklahoma, they always and will always have guys in the wings ready to step in,” Texas A&M coach Mike Sherman said. “I’m sure that you lose a Bradford or McCoy, you look at it from the outside, you say `Wow, that’s too bad.’ … They have guys that will step up and play.”
After Bradford injured his shoulder in last year’s season opener, Landry Jones went on to throw for 3,198 yards, breaking Bradford’s Big 12 freshman record. Bradford was the No. 1 overall draft pick after bypassing his senior season.
“As far as me getting to Sam’s level, that’s not my goal. My goal is not to be Sam Bradford,” Jones said. “Yes, he is a great player. … But that’s not who I’m trying to be right now. I’m trying to be Landry Jones, the best player that I can be.”
Coach Bob Stoops said that, like Bradford, Jones has a good attitude and work ethic while being a humble team guy for the seventh-ranked Sooners. The coach doesn’t want to extend the comparisons much further right now.
“In all fairness to Landry, we love where he’s at. We love everything that he’s doing,” Stoops said. “But to compare him to the No. 1 pick in the draft and a guy that set records, it’s just not fair. … Just isn’t quite fair just yet.”
Zac Lee is back for Nebraska after starting 12 games last season, but coach Bo Pelini won’t say if he will still be the starter when the No. 8 Cornhuskers open Saturday against Western Kentucky.
Lee missed spring practice to recover from surgery on his right (throwing) elbow, possibly clearing the way for backup Cody Green or spring sensation Taylor Martinez to start.
Former Texas Tech coach Mike Leach often plugged in different quarterbacks with the same head-spinning results in his pass-happy offense. Kliff Kingsbury, B.J. Symons, Sonnie Cumby, Cody Hodges, Harrell and Taylor Potts all led the Big 12 _ and often the nation _ in passing.
New Red Raiders coach Tommy Tuberville plans to be a bit more balanced but will still throw plenty. Potts earned the starting nod over Steven Sheffield in the preseason.
At Colorado, junior Tyler Hansen will again start over coach’s son Cody Hawkins; senior Carson Coffman (four starts in 2009) will start for Kansas State; and sophomore Kale Pick replaces Reesing as Kansas’ No. 1 quarterback.
Oklahoma State’s new starter is junior Brandon Weeden after only limited snaps behind Robinson.
Blaine Gabbert followed Daniel at Missouri, and threw for 3,593 yards with 24 TDs and nine interceptions last season even while bothered by a gimpy ankle. Gabbert is healthy and can build on that valuable season of experience.
“Seeing the things I did right and some of the things I did wrong have helped me out a lot,” Gabbert said. “I’m a whole new player.”
Sounds like so many of the Big 12 quarterbacks.
By Mark Davis
The nation founders, the Lone Star State thrives
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