2014 Spring Breakdown: Quarterbacks

Texas Tech wrapped its first season under coach Kliff Kingsbury with a Holiday Bowl win over Arizona State, signed a promising 2014 recruiting class and now spring ball is just around the corner. RaiderPower.com senior writer Joe Yeager breaks down the roster and highlights position battles to beginning with the quarterbacks.

Probable Starter: Davis Webb | 6-foot-4, 195 | Sophomore | Prosper, Texas

Backups: Collin Bowen | 6-foot-3, 200 | Freshman | Amarillo, Texas
Tanner Tausch | 6-foot-2, 210 | Junior | Keller, Texas
Mike Richardson | 6-foot-1, 195 | Freshman | Marble Falls, Texas

Most Intriguing Battle: Who will emerge from the muddle behind Davis Webb?

Position Power Rating: 85

Texas Tech's quarterback situation going into spring of 2014 resembles its position going into the spring of 2013. Last spring, you'll recall, a highly touted but rather untested Michael Brewer entered camp as the prohibitive favorite to lock up the starting berth, and behind him were unknowns such as Brant Costilla, Dustin Walton and Clayton Nicholas. As of the present, there is no doubt that Davis Webb, despite relatively little experience, is the main man at quarterback. And behind him are obscurities Collin Bowen, Mike Richardson and Tanner Tausch.

Webb, a sophomore who showed considerable promise as a freshman, could emerge as an elite college quarterback as soon as this season. And if he does, Texas Tech will be grand at that position. However, as Michael Brewer's back injury last August proves, having a talented starter is not good enough. It is critical that Kliff Kingsbury develop at least one competent signal caller to stand in reserve behind Webb. This will be one of Kingsbury's prime goals in the coming spring camp.

But people cannot help being excited by the lanky Webb. Perhaps no other quarterback in Texas Tech history had the upside—measured by NFL potential—that Webb has. At 6-foot-4 he has great stature in the pocket and can see the field well. His arm is one of the strongest in school history, rivaled perhaps by only Ron Reeves and Billy Joe Tolliver. Webb can, as they say, make all the throws and a few others that not many at the collegiate level are capable of. Webb is also a fiery leader who has already gained the respect of his teammates.

Webb's only real weakness is occasional inaccuracy and a lack of experience that only time in the system will remedy. But Webb may already be improving his accuracy. He was certainly on the money in his last game where he completed 28 of 41 passes for 403 yards and four touchdowns without an interception in Tech's upset win over Arizona State in the Holiday Bowl.

For the season he completed 226 of his 361 attempts for 2,718 yards with 20 touchdowns and nine interceptions. Among the nation's freshman quarterbacks, he was fifth in passing yards and third in passing efficiency. Webb also broke the school record for passing yardage by a freshman, pulverizing the mark of 1,596 yards set by Zebbie Lethridge in 1994.

About the backups—all of them walk-ons--we really know very little.

Collin Bowen was 20-2 as a high school starter and was his district's Offensive MVP in 2011 and 2012. He passed and rushed for over 1,000 yards in both of those campaigns, so Bowen would seem to have the wheels Kingbury likes in a quarterback.

Tanner Tausch tossed for 2,051 yards on 154 of 261 passing for Kilgore Junior College last season. His touchdown-to-interception ratio was 18/12. Mark Stoops and Neal Brown at the University of Kentucky also wanted Tausch to walk on there.

Marble Falls' Mike Richardson may be the most mysterious and intriguing of the backups. He threw for 724 yards against Boerne Champion, which set a state record for passing yardage in a game, and is second best nationally. As a junior Richardson threw for 2,190 yards, and as a senior he completed 66 percent of his passes for 2,751 yards with an astounding 31 touchdowns and only four interceptions. He also rushed for 351 yards. As with former Tech quarterback Baker Mayfield, it is a bit of a mystery why Richardson didn't attract more recruiting interest.

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