He stood composed, poised and answered every question head on and without hesitation. He stood in front of a room, brave in front of those ready to dissect his every answer. He looked comfortable; like a quarterback should. But he was more than a quarterback, he was a young man ready to move past his off-field issues and help his football team anyway he can.
It's been a long road for Pachall since his suspension from a year ago. Of course he went through the spring, but never meeting with the media. But on Tuesday TCU head coach Gary Patterson said his star quarterback approached him about meeting with the media to address the questions many had on their minds. Like a true head coach, Patterson stood close by his quarterback as he stood in front of a packed room.
And Pachall answered questions.
What was it like to be away from the team?
When was the moment of clarity?
What was the toughest part of being away?
The biggest trust he needed to earn back was from his team.
"I could tell by the look in their eyes that they didn't have too much judgment but I knew at the same time I had let them down. Coming back it wasn't as much what I needed to say, it was what I needed to do, he said. "It was just a mentality I had to have on and off the field to prove to them that they could trust me and I could be their leader."
While some may feel skeptical about Pachall's chance to come back, the quarterback isn't concerning himself with opinions of others.
"Honestly anything any of them have to say is there opinion and they're entitled to that. I'm doing everything that was set forth to me and I'm going to keep doing that," Pachall said. "No matter what anybody has to say, negative or positive, I can only control myself and what I do. That's what's going to keep me moving forward. I don't feel I have too much to prove to anybody, for me and my teammates it's all about each game of the season and winning each one of those. It's nothing to prove to anybody else, that may come along with it and it may seem like I'm proving something. I just really want to line up on that field and play with my teammates and friends."
Regaining his starting position to line up with his teammates won't be an easy task with the return of Trevone Boykin, who led TCU to their 8th consecutive bowl game last season. Pachall admits that he can't worry about just regaining his spot back.
"I know it's none of my decision, the only thing I can control is how I perform on the field in practice and how I conduct myself off the field. I can't stress out or worry about getting my spot back," Pachall said. "All I can do is know at the end of each day I put forth 100% and do everything I could for myself and my teammates. The rest will fall into place."