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Steve Sarkisian not ready to name starting QB for No. 21 Texas

Syndication: Austin American-Statesman

UT Austin head coach Steve Sarkisian watches his players run drills. The University of Texas at Austin football team met for practice at the Frank Denius Fields on Aug. 7, 2021. Aem Ut Football 16

Aaron E. Martinez/American-Statesman via Imagn Content Services, LLC

AUSTIN, Texas -- The Texas Longhorns have wrapped up training camp and coach Steve Sarkisian still isn’t naming his starting quarterback.

Casey Thompson and Hudson Card have been sharing snaps evenly with the first-team offense ahead of the Sept. 4 season opener against No. 23 Louisiana-Lafayette, Sarkisian said.

“I have not named (a starter),” he said. “I guess there is nothing to share.”

Yet the quarterback duel remains the biggest question mark about Texas heading into Sarkisian’s debut season in Austin after calling plays as offensive coordinator for last season’s national champion, Alabama.

Sam Ehlinger started for most of the last four seasons before heading to the NFL instead of returning for one more.

Thompson might have seemed an obvious choice when he threw four touchdowns after Ehlinger was injured in the Alamo Bowl last season. But Card is a ripe talent from nearby Lake Travis High School, a factory of major-college quarterbacks. He has kept up the pressure and impressed with his arm since spring practice.

Sarkisian has said both players struggled in their first scrimmage of training camp but played much better in the second.

Sarkisian said he’s not trying to keep secrets to hamper Louisiana-Lafayette’s game planning for the opener.

“None of it is about a competitive advantage,” he said. ""It’s truly about trying to do what’s best for our football team.”

And there’s no consideration of whether the player not selected to start might opt to transfer, Sarkisian said.

Thompson considered transferring after the 2018 season but ultimately opted to stay at Texas and sat behind Ehlinger for two more seasons.

“I can’t worry about that,” Sarkisian said of an potential transfer. “I have to make decisions that are in the best interest of the entire football organization and our entire team.”