Today’s question, which will be handled by columnists Kirk Bohls and Cedric Golden:
No. 5: If it were your call, what would you do with Jerrod Heard this season?
There are options, of course.
(1) Redshirt him. Give him a year to learn the system, get a little bigger, get a little stronger, play some scout team quarterback.
(2) Play him. Which means you then either …
(2a) Start him
(2b) Put him at No. 2, behind David Ash and ahead of Tyrone Swoopes
(2c) Put him at No. 2, behind Ash and Swoopes
At Denton Guyer, Heard won back-to-back Class 4A Division I state championships in 2012 and 2013. He was 36-8 as a starter, and was a two-time first-team all-state selection. He played in the 2014 U.S. Army All-American Bowl and took part in the Elite 11 Camp. But he also wasn’t an early enrollee, so has just begun working out with the team.
So, what to do?
BOHLS: PUT HIM AT NO. 2.
“Jerrod Heard would be my backup quarterback. I understand they can’t move Tyrone Swoopes at this point if David Ash went down early, but I’d spoon-feed Heard some playing time and groom him as the quarterback of the future. He’s bigger than he looks, is athletic, can run with the ball, has good footwork and has the pedigree as a two-time 4A state champion. Heard just has a bigger upside than Swoopes, who is not fast and still has accuracy issues.”
GOLDEN: PLAY HIM.
“I’d install a package for him and play the kid immediately. This team may struggle to score this season, so why not give defenses something extra to think about, like the Florida Gators did with Tim Tebow when he backed up Chris Leak in the 2007 championship season? I expect Heard to supplant Tyrone Swoopes as the backup eventually. Why not give him a taste right now, just in case David Ash gets hurt? Besides, the days of really good players staying for four years are about over in college football. If he can help you now, play him now.”
News on Bevo Beat is free and unlimited. Access to the rest of Hookem.com is included with an Austin American-Statesman subscription in addition to Statesman.com and the ePaper edition. Subscribe today at statesman.com/subscribe.