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Archive for Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Big 12 Conference football notebook

August 29, 2006

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Texas taps McCoy as starting QB

Austin, Texas - Colt McCoy was selected as the starting quarterback for No. 3 Texas on Monday, ending a battle with fellow freshman Jevan Snead to replace Vince Young when the defending national champions open the season against North Texas.

McCoy, who red-shirted last season behind Young, earned the start with a strong preseason camp, coach Mack Brown said.

"He (McCoy) had a terrific camp and was at his best during our scrimmages," Brown said.

Brown said he still wanted to play both quarterbacks against North Texas, but wouldn't script when Snead might get in the game.

"I think we're in as good of a spot as we could expect at the position. All they need now is to get some game experience," Brown said.

Snead, the Longhorns' top offensive recruit, graduated high school early and pushed McCoy in spring practice. McCoy responded by getting stronger in the weight room and with diligent workouts with receivers over the summer.

McCoy was one of the most prolific passers in Texas high school history. He set a Class 2A career record with 9,344 yards, fourth best in state history. He threw 116 touchdowns.

Meier gets nod at QB for K-State opener

Manhattan - Kansas State quarterback Dylan Meier will start his first college football game in nearly two years when he steps under center in Saturday's season-opener against Illinois State.

The senior from Pittsburg outlasted heralded freshman Josh Freeman to earn the starting nod, after three other contenders - former starters Allan Evridge and Allen Webb, and backup Kevin Lopina - decided to transfer from the program.

Meier, who has thrown for more than 1,500 yards and nine touchdowns in parts of two seasons, missed all of last year while recovering from shoulder surgery. He has not started a game since the Wildcats beat Missouri on Nov. 6, 2004.

The decision came a week after first-year coach Ron Prince praised both quarterbacks during the final open practice of fall camp.

Prince released his first official depth chart Sunday night, and despite returning 17 starters from last season, the two-deep includes 10 players who never have started a game.

Meier will be protected by three offensive linemen making their first career starts, including red-shirt freshman Nick Stringer at left tackle. The others are sophomore Gerard Spexarth at right guard and senior Michael Frieson at right tackle.

Carlos Alsup will get the nod at running back while Thomas Clayton, last year's leading rusher, serves a one-game suspension for an altercation with a parking-services employee last fall. He will be backed up by 5-foot-7 freshman Leon Patton and junior-college transfer James Johnson.

On defense, former walk-on Andrew Erker - who earned a scholarship this fall - will start at safety in place of Marcus Watts, who dislocated his hip in last year's finale but has practiced most of fall camp.

The defensive line includes new starters in junior-college transfer Rob Jackson, Ian Campbell and Steven Cline, who supplanted veteran Quintin Echols at defensive tackle.

Tech selects Harrell as starting quarterback

Lubbock, Texas - Sophomore Graham Harrell has been selected as the starting quarterback for No. 25 Texas Tech, and in Saturday's opener against SMU he'll become the first underclassman to lead the Red Raiders' wide-open offense since 2001.

Harrell, who owns Texas high school career records for yards passing and touchdowns, had been favored to beat out red-shirt freshman Chris Todd. Tech coach Mike Leach confirmed Monday that Harrell had won the job.

Now Harrell will get his chance to lead the nation in passing, as the past four starters at Tech have done as seniors. The past three have been fifth-year seniors.

Harrell, who wasn't available for comment Monday, passed for 392 yards and three touchdowns in five games as a backup last year. He went 41-3 as a starter in high school and racked up 12,532 yards and 167 touchdowns. He threw 67 TDs his senior season.

Dismissed OU QB enrolls at Sam Houston

Huntsville, Texas - Dismissed Oklahoma quarterback Rhett Bomar has enrolled at Division I-AA Sam Houston State, where he doesn't have to sit out a year but still must wait for eligibility clearance from the NCAA.

Bomar and a teammate were kicked off the team at Oklahoma earlier this month for violating NCAA work rules by accepting payment for more work than they performed at a car dealership.

Bomar could play for the Bearkats this season after a review by the NCAA reinstatement committee. Players transferring between Division I-A schools must sit out one year.

"I am excited about it," Bomar told Houston television station KRIV. "Just the opportunity to come down here and be able to play this year at some point."

Oklahoma State names captains

Stillwater, Okla. - Three Oklahoma State football players were named Monday as team captains as the Cowboys prepare for their season opener against Missouri State.

Oklahoma State's permanent captains will be senior offensive lineman Corey Hilliard, senior defensive end Victor DeGrate and sophomore kicker Jason Ricks.

The Cowboys also will have a fourth captain's position that is rotated during the season, coach Mike Gundy said.

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