It didn’t take long for Texas Longhorns fans to bail on quarterback Quinn Ewers in the 2023 college football season.
Ewers, a one-time top overall recruit out of Southlake Carroll High School in Texas, committed to the Longhorns before reclassifying and flipping to the Ohio State Buckeyes.
“Elite QB prospect at the top of the 2022 cycle, at his position and across the board. Future impact high-major starter with long-term potential to be taken high in the NFL Draft,” Gabe Brooks of 247Sports said of Ewers at the time.
After one season sitting behind C.J. Stroud at Ohio State, the prince that was promised returned home to Austin for the 2022 season.
Ewers impressed early on, including against the Alabama Crimson Tide, before suffering a shoulder injury that derailed his season.
He returned weeks later but was up and down the rest of the way. Ewers finished the season with 2,177 yards, 15 touchdowns and six picks in his first season as a starter.
But 2023, and a clean-cut look, brought high expectations.
“One thing we had talked about is sometimes your appearance/perception precedes you and then you almost have to overcome yourself,” Texas coach Steve Sarkisian said after Ewers cut his trademark mullet. “So all of a sudden now the guy gets a haircut and he cleans his beard up a little bit. And everyone thinks Quinn’s real serious right now. But that’s human nature, right?”
Well, the first half of the 2023 season was certainly solid. Ewers went 14-of-23 for 163 yards and a touchdown. But the Longhorns struggled as whole and led visiting Rice just 16-3 at the break.
This did not sit well with Texas fans.
— Message Board Geniuses (@BoardGeniuses) September 2, 2023
One half does not a season make. And Ewers was far from terrible in the half. But he’d better keep his head on a swivel, because superstar freshman Arch Manning is waiting in the wings.