1. System Poster

    Is it possible that Bowman is actually being UNDERRATED by folks around the league? Going by the numbers at least, his freshman year stands above a bunch of really notable guys (Mayfield, Webb, Mahomes) and over a couple of guys on this list (Brewer, Ehlinger, Hurts). And it’s not as if he had a superior supporting cast. Just comparing that 2013 Tech team with Webb and Mayfield (since I’m most familiar with it), that 2013 team had four skill position guys that were either high draft picks or are still in the league. Bowman had either undersized freshmen or guys that Will Be Going Pro in Something Other than Sports (Antoine Wesley was a nice player, even if he was undrafted, but if I had my choice, I take Jace Amaro as a dependable, always open option over the middle for a true freshman qb).

    He doesn’t have the same upside as a runner as most of these guys, but perhaps he can make up for it by being a better passer.

    • ianaboyd

      I think you’re overlooking a few things Bowman had going for him:
      1) Kingsbury, the blessed, and a multi-year infrastructure built up around him.
      2) 6-6 matchup problems at both X and Z receiver as well as savvy and quick slots in side in Collins and High.
      3) A fairly experienced OL.
      4) An easier draw. He didn’t face the better Ds in the league save for Iowa State, who took him apart.

      I see him as probably another Davis Webb and I like the incoming kid better long-term.

      • System Poster

        I think YOU’RE overlooking a bunch of things that, say, Baker Mayfield had going for him.

        1) Kingsbury following the most successful recruiting period in Tech’s history
        2) The biggest matchup problem in the conference with Jace Amaro, along with returning 1,000 yard receiver and former four star prospect Eric Ward, Bradley Marquez, who spent four years in the league, and Jakeem Grant, not to mention DeAndre Washington in the backfield
        3) A future NFL third round draft pick at left tackle
        4) A MUCH easier draw than what Bowman faced (including SMU, Stephen F. Austin, Texas State, Kansas, and Baylor) His toughest opponent was TCU, who ate his lunch (52% completion percentage, 3 interceptions to only 1 TD). He also looked completely lost against UT (54% completion percentage, 1 interception, 0 TD’s before getting benched).

        I think it’s unlikely that he morphs into Baker Mayfield by the time his eligibility is up and he’s for sure not going to be Pat Mahomes, but he’s already a better decision maker and more accurate passer than Webb ever was. I don’t think his ceiling is so far off from the other top QB’s in the league (except for Purdy).

        • ianaboyd

          Maybe, just seemed like things were better established for Bowman than Mayfield. Some of those wideouts you mention hadn’t put it all together yet and Bowman got a really easy draw.


          That’s not harder than what Mayfield faced. Bowman has a reputation for folding against top defenses from his time at Grapevine, especially 3-down teams that can confuse him. He’s only a freshman so maybe he’ll work it out, I agree overall that he’s solid.

          • System Poster

            I always appreciate that you’re willing to engage. While I have plenty more I could say, in an effort to keep my dumb quibbles about Alan Bowman’s ceiling from distracting from the far more interesting points you raised in your article, I will make just one last point, which is that it wasn’t uncommon for even experienced quarterbacks in Kingsbury’s system to struggle against ISU and WVU’s defenses: https://www.espn.com/nfl/player/gamelog/_/id/3139477/type/college

            I should probably just trust your read on these things, anyway. You were already right about Bowman once (and I was very wrong, thinking he would spend his five years on the bench).

          • ianaboyd

            Here’s the lowdown that has informed me getting more down on him, he got lost a few times against OSU and ISU, dodged Texas and ISU (although Texas was beat up anyways), and I heard from a HS coach that faced him that he kinda withered against the 3-down sort of look.

            Here’s a reason to be more optimistic: Yost will focus on helping him get cleaner reads by using a TE and trying to generate more of a run game.

  2. Johnny

    One thing to consider about Bowman, while he missed some of the better defenses, he also missed a lot of practice time and prep time. Kingsbury has said that the number one going in that week gets all the reps, while the backups get scraps. With his injuries last year, his development might have been a little stunted, yet he was a freshman holding his own most of the time. Yost runs a system that is extremely less complicated than Kingsbury, one that’s designed to run a few plays great, rather run a great number of plays ok.

    • ianaboyd

      Good point. And again, having a TE and a run game is essential to the Yost system. Will Tech have those things? Well, maybe. It’s definitely plausible.

      I bet their D improves faster than expected.

  3. quigley

    There were rumblings from Bama that Hurts had improved at throwing the ball even before moving to OU. OU may benefit from this.

    Hurts’ situation appears IDEAL. He personally appears humble enough to learn and confident enough to perform. In addition, he’s joining one of the few offenses capable of approximating the offensive efficiency of the team he left.

    The press generated by a successful Hurts season in Norman would be ridiculous for OU offensive recruiting and Riley.

    • ianaboyd

      He definitely got at least a little better, I just don’t think he processes the field quickly and I don’t think Riley can fix that quickly or maybe at all. He can find some concepts that help him out though, that’s for sure.

      Since Hurts already has a pretty good rep as a champion and the guy that saved them against Georgia, I’m not sure how much Riley can boost his own rep unless Hurts does improve a ton as a passer this year and they win the league again. Shouldn’t matter though, Riley is golden. What may impact his stock more is how well Kingsbury, the blessed, does in the NFL. Positive results there would boost Riley either in going NFL if he wants that or continuing to get top QB talent that can learn the sort of system that’s taking over the pros.

  4. […] Here’s a good piece from Ian Boyd checking off the four things an offense needs to be capable of these days to overcome a defense’s plan to, as Boyd puts it, “… make sure they can take away an offense’s best features and force them to get by on their third or fourth options.” […]

  5. Travis

    Well done keeping up with Baylor OL. As you say, Fruhmorgen unseating Teck at center, with Teck moving to RG, is a great sign.

    Bedier was hurt for much of spring ball, and the guy playing RT was JohnCarlo Valentin. Valentin was a LT for all of fall camp last year until injuries forced him to guard for most of the year. Apparently they think he can work at tackle, despite being closer to 6’3 than 6’5. He was a pretty highly rated recruit.

    Brewer will have better weapons this year than he has had. The only loss is Hurd, which is huge, but Baylor–like the rest of the Big 12– retains a bevy of skill talent. Look for Trestan Ebner to explode as a junior; he really took the reins towards the end of the year. He had a phenomenal bowl game.

      • Philly Frog


        They’re trying to get to the point where they don’t have to start underclassmen as often, and losing Robinson and Rogers to injuries exposed the depth problem.

        Baldwin was a guy Cumbie had recruited earlier, and Baldwin saw the depth chart in Fort Worth.

        The reason I say my money is on Rogers is that I’ve heard he may be the hardest worker on the team. The last guy I heard that about was Boykin during the summer of the air raid conversion. Back then everyone seemed to think that the Aggie transfer was going to be The Guy (and you could have asked the same question about him then that you ask about Baldwin now).

        Delton is Muehlstein insurance, by the way.

        • ianaboyd

          I remember thinking that A&M guy would probably get the job, but we’d seen Boykin play for two years already and he’d really flashed a lot of potential and mostly been done in by horrid OL play. We haven’t seen Rogers at all because he hasn’t been healthy enough to play football for two years.

          I wonder if Delton may also be Sewo insurance, dude can run the Wildcat in short-yardage/red zone at as high a level as you could wish for.

          If Rogers has put it together and is ready to go then more power to him but I haven’t seen anything of all from him and I have a fair idea of what Baldwin offers.

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