The battle to be Baylor’s starting quarterback looks to be down to two guys, based on the compliments coach Matt Rhule tossed their way Tuesday.
Rhule said most of the team had a bad practice. But he liked what he saw from two quarterbacks — sophomore Zach Smith, who started the final four games last season, and senior Anu Solomon, a transfer from Arizona.
“I thought both quarterbacks played really well today; that was a positive,” Rhule said. “They made a lot of good plays and gave the receivers a chance to make plays on the ball. You’re always looking for a quarterback that has that certain something, that special ‘it.’ Right now they’re both learning, so it might take them a couple more weeks to really see that come out.”
Charlie Brewer, a freshman from Class 6A powerhouse Lake Travis High School, also has enjoyed a good training camp. He enrolled in January and went through spring drills. Typically, Rhule has gone out of his way to acknowledge Brewer, who led his team to a state championship last December.
“Charlie has had a really strong camp,” Rhule said, “so I don’t want to in any way dismiss him. Preston Heard has had a really strong camp. But the two guys who have played and have a little more experience, you’d like to see them, like my college coach said, see the moxie they have when they’re out there.
“I think their focus has been outstanding,” Rhule added about Smith and Solomon. “I’ve been really pleased with the attention to detail they’ve had as far as learning, preparing and studying. So that part has been really, really good.
“Sunday is a day off, and some guys have been writing papers for four hours, so I’m proud of them as far as academically and getting it done. Now that that’s done today, put a little more focus on football and time on football.”
Smith says he now weighs 215 pounds. That’s a drop from 232 — what he weighed when Baylor beat Boise State in the Cactus Bowl to end last season.
On Saturday, quarterbacks coach Glenn Thomas said Smith, Solomon and Brewer received reps with the first-team offense. Thomas said there was no leader.
“We’ve been really fluid with the substitution, and they’ve been receptive to that,” Thomas said. “I think each and every one of them is striving in their own way.”