BEVO BEAT

Tom Herman: Shane Buechele or Sam Ehlinger? Mum’s the word

Posted October 9th, 2017

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Tom Herman’s game-week press conference ahead of Saturday’s Oklahoma game has come and gone. Here are the highlights:

1. The big question of the week: Who’ll start at quarterback? Herman didn’t give us an answer — on any of the three separate times he was asked.

“I knew I was gonna get asked that question,” Herman said, smiling after the first question of the press conference. “I don’t know if we’re ready to make that decision till we see how healthy Shane is. He was better yesterday but still a little bit gimpy.”

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Two questions later, Herman was asked again. This time, the question was about what Sam Ehlinger needs to do more of to get the job.

“Sam made a lot of mistakes,” Herman corrected. “No doubt he played really well and tough and physical. I don’t know what good it does me to tell Mike Stoops and Lincoln Riley what I feel about my quarterback situation.”

Then, several questions later, a reporter piggby-backed his question about the kicking game with: “And second, is there any update in the quarterback position in the last 15 minutes?”

The room — Herman included — broke into laughter.

2. Speaking of the kicking game, don’t expect anything to change on the depth chart despite Joshua Rowland’s struggles. Herman said at last night’s practice that Rowland hit 15 of 15 field goal tries, including six from beyond 50 yards.

3. When asked to explain the constant rotation of running backs and how the carries are being split between Chris Warren III, Kyle Porter and Toneil Carter, Herman said it’s because none of them have taken control of the position as their own. “So you’re gonna continue to see that until somebody grabs a hold of it and goes.”

4. Herman said his decision to go for it on fourth-and-goal at the 2 in the first quarter was a no-brainer, and that he would do it again. “Every metric in the book says go for it … an opportunity to get 7 instead of 3 and you’re 2 yards away from that 7, that means the other team is 98 yards away from 7.”

5. Herman may be new as a Longhorns head coach, but he’s certainly not new to Oklahoma. His Houston Cougars upset the Sooners in last year’s season opener and he was on Mack Brown’s staff as a graduate assistant for Oklahoma’s 63-14 win in 2000.

In other words, he gets the rivalry.

“I’m excited about being in this rivalry,” he said. “I have one fond memory, one not-so-fond memory — 63-14. I still remember that score. It’s embedded into my brain.

“But I think when you go into one of the most storied football rivalries in college football history, if not THE most, it’s important that you recognize this is a big game for a lot of people in both states, it’s a big game because it’s a conference game, it’s a big game because of the uniqueness of the Texas State Fair and it being on a neutral site every year and half the stadium is burnt orange and half the stadium is crimson. We do recognize that.”

Yep. That sounds about right.

Saturday’s kickoff is at 2:30 p.m. It’ll be aired on ESPN.

The post Tom Herman: Shane Buechele or Sam Ehlinger? Mum’s the word appeared first on Hook ‘Em.

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