NR: 36 SR: N/A Star Rating: ****
An Inside Texas conversation with former Mart (and current Mansfield Timberview) head coach Terry Cron on Quan Cosby:
IT: What are Quan's strengths as a football player?
Cron: He has a lot of them. He's a genuine thoroughbred football player. For us, he never left the field. Of course, in 2A players can do that, but he can do it anywhere. He was as good a defensive player as he was an offensive player. He was as good a return player as anybody I've seen. And the thing that really stands out in my mind is that he's the only player in Texas history to have made all state at three positions. He was first-team all state as a quarterback, as a defensive back and also as a kick returner. And the greatest thing about that, he did it two years in a row and he's the only one that's ever done that! He's just a total player. He can do it all. He's smart, he's got a great football savvy, he's an intelligent young man and he's got a great passion for the game. He's such a competitor. Obviously, he wouldn't have done all the things that's he's done if he wasn't that kind of a young man. He's the best athlete that I've ever coached and I've coached some pretty good ones. In high school, he benched 375 and he could run over anybody and turn any tackler. If he wanted to run around 'em he could do that and of course he won the 100 and 200, and as a freshman he qualified in state in five events. I've never heard of anybody do that -- triple jump, long jump, 100, 200 and sprint relay -- so he's a super athlete and a great young man and I wish I had a whole truckload of those every year. He is one that can make you be successful. He made me a very smart coach. I did have the privilege of coaching him from the 7th grade on up and coach Brown is taking over now. I know he's in good hands and I look for great things out of him.
IT: How do you see Quan being utilized in the Texas offense?
Cron: I'm not coaching in the college ranks, but I do know with the receivers of the past that Texas has had receivers with height and Quan is not that tall, about 5-10, 5-11, but he's got great vertical and he plays like a 6-3 kid as far as his athleticism. I'm just speculating on years past, what Texas I've watched with the great wide receivers they've had, I think Quan would be that really good slot receiver, that No. 2 receiver, the one that would take the man-on-man coverage to take the pressure off those great wideouts and I think Quan would be a really good inside receiver in the slot or in the twins, ace package, whatever. But I don't think you can afford to double-team (the outside) and man cover him or just cover Quan in zone... He could also run reverses, counters. If they want to run a reverse pass, he can throw the ball 60 yards and playing centerfielder like he's done in baseball, he's got an awesome arm. And kick and punt returns, he's as good as I've ever seen, so I think those things show his athleticism and he'll use his talents more on offense but there's nothing saying he couldn't play safety on the defensive side. He's just that kind of a player.
IT: How has Quan's physique changed, if any, since high school?
Cron: Quan has changed very little other than he's maybe gained five to 10 pounds, 10 pounds max, but he looks almost the same. He has always been built great. You'd think four years, man that's going to be hard to come back, but it's not like he hasn't been doing anything for four years. Playing the schedule he's been on year round it's been a lot of physical testing that he does every day, staying in shape and lifting and running and doing the baseball thing, I would say it's really amazing. He looks almost the same but he's probably a few pounds heavier than he was, but not heavy as in anything but more muscle.
IT: Is Quan a leader, and if so, how does he lead?
Cron: Quan was a leader that so much had the other players' respect that whatever he said, they listened. He didn't have to yell or be rah-rah, he led by example... I know he really helped his brother Quincy, who was a tailback for us. Whenever he did anything wrong or messed up he'd be corrected by Quan before I could. But as smart as he is and as competitive as he is, it was almost like having a coach on the field. Like I said, he hardly ever left the field. He was on punt return and kick returns, he was on our field goals and extra points... I talked to him in-between the whistles but as a leader he was an ultimate leader. Probably the strongest point about Quan is as good as he was, he wasn't a prima donna, thinking I'm so good I don't have to work hard. He worked as hard or harder than anybody I've ever had and that's what leadership is about. When someone is that good and he plays and works out, never missed a practice, never let up, never asked to get out of anything -- he'd go from running the first-team offense quarterback to, when the second team was in, he'd go put a jersey on and take someone out of the defensive squad. He's that kind of player and that's an awesome trait to have. Only winners have that and he certainly has it.
IT: Is there anything you'd like to add about Quan that we didn't already cover?
Cron: I know he's put a lot of thought in and I'm glad that's he's at Texas, that's a great place to be. I know the coaches there pretty well and I just know he's in good hands... I think he's in great hands. I know he put a lot of thought into it and he's serious about it and he wants to get his education and go on and help Texas win a national championship. If you ask him, that's what he wants to do. There's no kidding around about that, that's what he wants to do, and I think he's got the ability to be an asset that can get them to that point... I know he's going to give you everything he's got and that's a lot. I know that coach Brown and coach Chambers are going to take care of him and he's going to take care of Texas.
Playing for me, it was unreal, we won something like 48 games and lost two in his career as a high school player. He's so used to winning and he wanted to go to a place where they can do that and obviously, the feeling that he had with the Texas coaches and Austin was strong enough that that was his deciding factor, that he was going to go again where he had signed originally.
Note from Clendon: This Texas class is heavy on talented offensive players (nine of 15, with seven of the nine at the "skill" positions of QB, RB and WR), but if I were forced to pick one player whose possibilities excite me the most, I'd go with Cosby (Jamaal Charles and Jermichael Finley are close behind). Back in 2001 when Cosby originally inked with the Horns, his signature was almost as coveted as those of Cedric Benson, Derrick Johnson and one that escaped north of the Red River, Tommie Harris. Harris is already in the NFL, and Benson and D.J. are a couple of months away from their first round Draft call. That's not to say Cosby is even remotely assured of similar success. But it is to say that he is a supremely talented athlete who I'm glad to see in the Orange and White rather than lining up against 'em.
NEXT UP: BRANDON DUNCAN