Texas has 99 problems, but their Quarterback aint one.

Written by. Geoff Ketchum

Owner/Publisher of Orangebloods.com

 

One of the top stories from last weekend was in College Station, as true freshman Shea Patterson took off his redshirt, put on a cape and helped carry his team to a win on the road.

In the process, he completed 25 of 42 for 338 yards, two touchdowns and an interception.

The kid posted a 138.1 rating against an average defense and national pundits all over the place lost their minds like they’d seen the second-coming of Ron Powlus.

My reaction?

I didn’t see a damn thing that I haven’t already seen from Texas freshman Shane Buechele all season.

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Amazingly lost in the midst of a roller coaster of a 5-5 season, Buechele has arguably produced the single-best freshman quarterback campaign in the history of the Longhorn program. It’s either him or Colt McCoy in 2006. Personally, I’d give the nod to McCoy, but this is exclusive territory we’re talking about.

While he currently ranks 36th in the nation in passing efficiency with a 144.6 rating through 10 games, that number doesn’t tell the full story of Buechele’s season. In the last 10 seasons (2007-2016), only two quarterbacks in a Texas uniform has produced a better quarterback rating than Buechele’s this season … the 2008 version of McCoy and the 2012 version of David Ash.

Yes, that includes both the 2009 version of McCoy and the 2010 version of Garrett Gilbert.It’s part of the reason this season doesn’t make any damn sense. If I had told you before the season that Buechele would post better passer numbers than McCoy did in his senior season, every single one of you would have assumed that this team would be playing for reasonably big things in the final two weeks of the season.

Godsends are supposed to take you to the promised land, not the Texas Bowl, which begs a simple question.

Where would this team be without him? What if he had 10 fewer efficiency points and ranked 59th in the nation? Where would it be? Given the alternatives, it’s not crazy to think that Notre Dame, Baylor and Texas Tech all flip the other direction.

Would this be a 2-8 or 3-7 team without him?

It’s easy to forget that McCoy had only one season in his final three years at Texas that was as successful statistically as his first, but unless Buechele’s playing over his head and above his natural mean, it’s not unreasonable to say that we’re watching his floor as a player right now during his freshman season.

All of this is to say that the Longhorns might have 99 problems, but the quarterback position ain’t one.

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