Connor Brewer was the first commit in Texas' 2012 recruiting class and came to Austin as the nation's No. 7 overall quarterback. He had promise, but he'll never play a down for Texas after redshirting last season and announcing a transfer on Tuesday.
"I want to thank everyone at The University of Texas -- the coaching staff, the fans and especially my teammates for a great experience here in Austin over the last 18 months," Brewer said in the statement released by the school. "In particular, I want to thank Coach [Mack] Brown for giving me the opportunity to play football at The University of Texas. It was a dream come true, and I have loved every minute of being a Texas Longhorn."
Colleague William Wilkerson reached Brewer's mother by phone, who wouldn't confirm the reasons for Brewer's transfer, and also spoke with his quarterbacks' coach, Dennis Gile. Neither party offered many hints as to Brewer's future home.
"What the final, final straw was, I'm not sure. I don't know if he was getting the absolute fair shot there," said Dennis Gile, Brewer's private quarterbacks coach while in high school. "He's got a guy in front of him that's going to play at least two more years. They are making a big thing about this Swoopes kid and him being the future of the program. As a kid that's playing there that probably deserves to step on the field, at least next in line to Ash, I would feel the same way. What's the deal? There's no reason for him to just stay there and sit when he can be the starter somewhere else."
I'm not going to knock Brewer for that quote at all, but I don't buy it. The only people making a "big thing" about Tyrone Swoopes as the future of the program are fans and media who watched the spring game and saw Swoopes' natural playmaking ability. Brown hasn't said anything to that effect publicly, but Brown did move Swoopes ahead of Brewer on the depth chart. Once that happened, it wasn't too hard to foresee Brewer looking elsewhere for playing time.
Brewer completed 6-of-10 passes for 64 yards in the spring game (take that for what it's worth), but Swoopes' ability to make plays with his feet is all anyone who watched the Longhorns' spring game wanted to talk about.
Brewer will do fine elsewhere and has an unconditional release from Texas. He left Arizona with more state championship rings (3) than total losses (2), and he'll go somewhere else and take advantage of an opportunity for playing time. The depth chart at any national power who recruits like Texas is going to get a bit crowded and other programs will benefit.
Brewer had offers from Alabama, Arizona, Arizona State, Arkansas, Michigan, Nebraska, Notre Dame, Stanford, Tennessee, Texas A&M, UCLA, USC and Washington, but I'd expect his new home to have less of a blue-blood feel to it and be much closer to home than Austin.