Q&A with Chuck Long

Oklahoma's offensive coordinator talks about how the staff will handle the QBs against TCU.

All eyes will be on the Sooner quarterbacks when they take the field Saturday against TCU. OU has named junior Paul Thompson the starting quarterback with redshirt freshman Rhett Bomar the back-up. However, the OU coaches have said both quarterbacks will play.

Earlier today, OU Offensive Coordinator Chuck Long was on WWLS with yours truly and Bob Barry Jr. to talk about how he will handle the quarterback situation.

BBJ: Have you decided how much Rhett Bomar is going to play?

CL: "Let's see how the flow of the game goes. We don't have anything planned about getting Rhett in at this point or time in the game. We want to see how the flow of the game is going, and we told our quarterbacks the same thing. If you tell them a set thing and he doesn't get in at that point and time, then he gets upset about it. We will see how the game goes, and I won't end up doing anything until I confer with Coach Stoops on it and make sure he knows what we are doing and when. Of course, being the head coach he has veto power. He can say no, yes or whatever he wants to do. We are certainly going to go with that."

JH: How did the quarterbacks respond once the decision was made?

CL: "The great thing about these two quarterbacks is that they have really kept the team focus out in front of this race. That was evident with two things. No. 1, what I thought was a nice touch during training camp, was that they would get into the same car during training camp. They would drive each other to the chow hall to eat and then back to the locker room to hang out with the guys. I thought that was really nice for them to do that.

"It just told me that they were keeping the teams soul and spirit in front of them, and their teammates noticed that. Then the other thing was when Coach Stoops announced what was going to happen with the quarterbacks, the entire team gave them both an ovation. I have never seen that before. I thought that was pretty telling of our football team, the class of our team. And it was telling both of those guys that they believe in both of them. Don't worry about when you get in, or how you get in and all that, but that when you do get in we believe in you and that you can help us win games."

BBJ: If one QB is having a great quarter or three straight scoring drives do you leave him in then, or do you go ahead and pull him for the other guy because you have a lead at that point?

CL: "There is a fine line there. If he is just getting rolling you want to keep him rolling. However, if he has been rolling for about two or three scoring drives in a row then to me he has been rolling. Chances are we would try to get the next guy in and go from there. Again, we are going to go on feel, and we have a pretty good feel for what our team can do and where they are at.

"Hopefully, we can control the football game and both quarterbacks play a great deal. I will get a lot of feedback from our staff, and they will fill me in on what they feel is the time to do it. Bob will have a great feel as well. There are a lot of good coaches on the sidelines to help us out with that."


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