Here are some leftovers from my visit this week to Texas. Subject matter included the ascension of sophomore Garrett Gilbert to starting quarterback, replacing Colt McCoy.
On the spring quarterback race:
"The real question mark is we've done a good job here of running an offense here with Major Applewhite and Chris Simms and then changing it to Vince [Young] and then tweaking it for Colt. Our two question marks this spring are how do we tweak the offense toward the upcoming quarterbacks for the future? Where does [fifth-year senior] Sherrod Harris fit?"
On halftime at the national championship game:
"We thought Colt might come back. We were conservative in the second quarter. Colt wanted to play. That's great, that's valiant but you can't play. You're the spirit of this team, get your jersey, get your pads on and you get out there and get Garrett right in the middle of that team and pick them all up."
On the bad luck of losing Colt McCoy to injury:
"Where everything happened right in '05 against a great USC team, not much happened right in the first half [against Alabama]. We thought the teams were at least equal."
On expectations at Texas:
"The expectations of these kids and our current fans and therefore our current coaches is we need to get to that [championship] game every year. We're out of the win nine, win 10, out of win the South [Division]. We're out of just winning the conference, we'd like to do it all every year."
On developing a more diverse offense while transitioning from Colt:
"We've gotten pretty simple with our formations and therefore outexecuted people. We will not change our philosophy. We are going to be more stubborn because we have to get back to that [more balanced offense]."
On chasing the dream:
"Bobby Bowden and Joe Paterno said, 'After you win a national championship, your goals change. You expect and want to win it every year. The second one is harder than the first one.'
"That's why I was so disappointed. We missed by hundredths of a point last year . Then we miss this year with some [injury] circumstances.
"Texas has won 3 championships in 112 years. We've been in the mix three of the last five years."
On early commitments (Texas has 17 commits for 2011):
"By and large it's not like everybody else. We're recruiting four states but we're at a point now that a lot of them want to have their kids come here. They're not going to tell them to come, they're going to tell them to come look.
"When we were at North Carolina; Michigan, Ohio State, Notre Dame and Penn State started the [early] camp deal in the summer to lock up all the in-state players and then recruit out of state. When we got here, Texas was new to [junior] camps. What we were trying to do is have juniors come to camp. Then we would offer them before their senior years ... Now they're starting off in their sophomore year. That part is out of control.
"Most of the kids that come to our junior day have 15 offers. If we don't offer then, by the time they walk out the door they have 15 e-mails from coaches: "Did Texas offer you? If you don't you have 15 offers. If they didn't, they're fools.' If we don't offer him while he's on camps we probably lose him."
"We're lucky we know a lot about the kids because we've been around them. You've still got three semesters left in their academics. Very few have taken the SAT or ACT. You have to look at core and class rank."
GALE GILBERT, father of Garrett
On Colt McCoy's injury:
"That's got to be the earliest in the national championship or the Super Bowl that the starting quarterback had gone out. You know there's a lot of football to play but you can't give up too many opportunities."
On what it was like afterward with Garrett:
"Really more disappointment of being in that situation and not getting it done."
On Garrett's recruitment:
"He was always with Texas. When offers started coming in, he said we'll go look. I took him out to Cal and Stanford after his sophomore year. It's shut down, nobody's around and he said, 'What are we doing this for?' "
On what he was told after the national championship game:
"Coach Brown he was proud of the way our team came out and fought in the second half. I used it as a learning experience. My dad told me he was proud of me. Obviously, it was such an unfortunate deal with Colt going down. You never ask for something like that to happen.
"At halftime Colt was telling me to keep my head up and keep plugging away. The guys around me did a great job of making plays, stepping up and being leaders."
On taking snaps under center for the first time in years:
"I don't know how much of an issue it is. I'm sure Tim Tebow is working on all that. It's a big enough adjustment to go from college to the NFL."
On things slowing down in the second half of the Alabama game:
"Eventually. Hearing those guys say stay positive and stay with me that was a really comforting feeling. That first touchdown pass to Jordan [Shipley] was a big relief. Being a competitor I had all the confidence in the world in our team."