Sarkisian: Ewers, Manning competing for Texas' starting QB role
Texas is holding an open competition between sophomore Quinn Ewers and freshman Arch Manning to be the team's starting quarterback, head coach Steve Sarkisian confirmed, according to ESPN's Dave Wilson.
"I'm not worried about who's going to be on the cover of what magazine next week," Sarkisian said after Monday's practice. "(What) I'm more focused on is, is each guy focusing on what they need to do to develop to be the best player that they can be? Quinn has an entire year of a head start, but I don't want to hold Arch back. I want to see how far he can take this thing and what it can look like."
Ewers served as the Longhorns' starter for most of the 2022 campaign. The No. 2 overall prospect in the 2021 recruiting class, he passed for 2,177 yards, 15 touchdowns, and six interceptions while completing 58.1% of his pass attempts last season. He was named the Big 12 Newcomer of the Year after transferring from Ohio State following his 2021 campaign.
Ewers displayed his potential as Texas' signal-caller by completing 31 of his 47 pass attempts for 369 yards and one score in the Alamo Bowl against Washington.
Sarkisian noted that Ewers has taken on a more vocal role as Texas begins spring practices.
"I think what he's done, he's serving for Arch and, 'Hey, this is what it looks like,'" Sarkisian said.
Manning, meanwhile, enters the QB battle as one of the most sought-after recruits in the 2023 class. Similar to Ewers, Manning was also a five-star prospect out of high school before commiting to Texas last June. He also boasts a rich football lineage being the nephew of legendary quarterbacks Peyton and Eli Manning.
The Longhorns finished third in the Big 12 in scoring average (34.5) but were seventh in the conference when it came to passing yards per contest (241.4).
Backup Hudson Card opted to transfer to Purdue after the last season. The Longhorns will also have to move on without Doak Walker Award winner Bijan Robinson, who declared for the 2023 NFL Draft.