Vince Speaks: QB Breaks Silence, But Not Protocol

Imagine a taller, stronger <B>Roy Williams </B>behind center. Imagine the consensus 2002 national high school player of the year replacing his redshirt with a Burnt Orange jersey. Imagine Texas&#146; third-string quarterback. For now.

He’s QB Vince Young (6-5, 220) and, for now, he’s just another soft-spoken freshman trying to earn some playing time on a NCAA football team at the start of spring training.

Head coach Mack Brown reiterated Monday that there is a ways to go before depth charts are established, but, make no mistake: Chance Mock is the starter. The redshirt junior simply has had two additional years to learn the offense and, so far, it has made all the difference.

Fair enough, but…you mean to say that Young is actually listed behind…uh…the other quarterback? Hey, we’re talking Vince Young, right? As in…the next Michael Vick? The Second Coming of Bobby Layne? The immeasurable talent expected to lead The University-of-by-God-Texas to its fourth national championship…last season?

In a word, yes. And, for the record, the other QB is Matt Nordgren who, like Young, is a 6-5, 220-pounder who did not see any game action last season. But Nordgren served as Texas’ No. 3 QB signal caller as a redshirt freshman last season which gives him a leg up on Young.

But rare is the occasion when sports media converge almost exclusively on a third-stringer while those listed higher on the depth chart patiently wait for someone to put a microphone in their face. Part of it is because Brown prohibits a freshman from conducting interviews (for all kinds of good reasons, actually) until either he plays in his first game or until the season passes.

And part of it is because this is Vince Young. But the youngster expected to make all the right moves this fall said all the right things on Monday.

"It doesn’t matter (who starts) as long as we win the game," Young said. "We’re (Mock) good friends and we’re both working each other. We’re watching a lot of film and tapes, and doing what we have to do to win these games that we have to win…these two games…like OU."

Added Young, "Chance helps me with the offense because he’s been in it for a while (but) speed and moves and stuff like that, I help Chance with that."

Young had the "speed and moves" as a senior to rush for 1,274 yards on 116 attempts (10.9 yards-per-carry) and 24 rushing TDs in leading a (14-1) Houston Madison team to the Division II state semi-finals and 50.3 points-per-game average. What’s more, he completed 131-of-224 passes for 2,545 yards (against just four INTs) and 35 TDs.


For Young, though, it is not so much a matter of adjusting to the speed of the game but rather the speed of his fuel-injected receivers who can break the sound barrier when they are at full throttle. Young said he actually worked with the first and second team offenses Monday as a way to adjust to both "the timing (of routes) and the speed" of Texas’ talented receiving corps.

While Young waits for the collegiate game to come to him, the Texas offense should be in good hands when two-a-days begin in August, he believes.

"Chance is a good player and Nordgren is a good player," Young said diplomatically. "We’re all just out there taking our time to see what we’ve got."

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