TCU has finally settled on a quarterback.
“Shawn [Robinson] will be the starter,” coach Gary Patterson said on Saturday.
Robinson beat out Michael Collins for the job, and Patterson made his decision known as he ended fall camp with a practice inside Amon G. Carter Stadium.
Patterson said each quarterback will get playing time in the season opener against Southern on Sept. 1.
Robinson had been the favorite going into camp, and showed everything he needed to earn the job. At the end of the day, it came down to taking care of the ball and his ability to extend plays.
Robinson threw just three interceptions throughout camp, Patterson said.
“Our safeties alone have had like 19 [interceptions], so the other [quarterbacks] need to close up shop a little bit better,” Patterson said.
Robinson also has an “X-factor,” an innate ability to escape the pocket and keep plays alive.
Patterson and the coaching staff continue to praise the offensive line’s progress, but that remains a question mark going into the season. That unit lost four key contributors and all four are in NFL camps.
Having a quarterback who can make plays with their feet such as Robinson is a plus.
“He’s an offensive lineman’s dream,” Patterson said.
Collins has the ability to elude and escape pressure, too, but not on the same level as Robinson.
Additionally, Robinson has starting experience, leading TCU to a win at Texas Tech last November. He completed 6-of-17 passes for 85 yards with one touchdown and no interceptions, as well as rushing for 84 yards on 10 carries.
Robinson appeared in five other games last season. He finished his freshman year completing 13-of-27 passes for 184 yards with three touchdowns and no interceptions. He had 159 rushing yards on 23 carries.
Collins, meanwhile, walked on a season ago and impressed running the scout team. It didn’t take long for Patterson to put the Penn transfer on scholarship.
In the end, Robinson won the job that most expected him to, but Collins made him earn it. It’s a win-win for Patterson and TCU, too, because teams have to have quality backups in today’s game.
“You’ve got to have two,” Patterson said. “It’s just what it is. I don’t know anybody who’s made it through the year that they don’t have to have two.”