The Texas Longhorns and starting quarterback Quinn Ewers are gearing up for a College Football Playoff semifinal clash with Washington in the Sugar Bowl on New Year’s Day, and yet during media availability, Ewers’ backup Arch Manning was garnering all the attention.
This photo is a fitting snapshot of the intrigue that follows Manning wherever he goes:
NEW: One more Arch Manning story……for today…..probably.
Any talk of transferring was shut down by the 5-star freshman, eliminating a potential offseason storyline, but another one may be coming, depending on how Quinn Ewers plays down the stretch.https://t.co/Rz0iQwvDA2
Not that this should be a surprise. Freshmen seldom speak to reporters, and this is Manning’s first crack at a proper media court-holding session. The descendant of football legends whose uncles happen to be Peyton and Eli, this young Manning apparently has no plans to leave Austin despite myriad opportunities to start right away at other big-time programs.
Texas QB Arch Manning on the prospects he would consider leaving Texas..
I’m sure all the attention is something Manning has grown accustomed to, but he did say there are pros and cons to having such epic fame from such a young age. Mostly, the drawbacks are being out in public and wanting to keep a low profile. Pretty much impossible. But then, of course, he can reach out to Peyton and Eli whenever for invaluable mentoring.
What’s cool is, they aren’t imposing anything on young Arch and “don’t want to overstep.”
"I'm just a football player and a normal guy just going to college."
Texas QB Arch Manning spoke to what it means to carry the family name. He issues an apology thanks to advice from his grandfather Archie, and also quips about his uncles Peyton and Eli – "They are funny."… pic.twitter.com/Cdho5A8yOf
Few can relate to the pressures Manning is dealing with. Ewers can. He’s a product of Texas who grew up a huge Longhorns fan. Ewers was so good out of high school that he opted to graduate a full year early to enroll at Ohio State. Although he didn’t throw a single pass for the Buckeyes whilst backing up C.J. Stroud, Ewers returned to Austin anyway. It wasn’t an overnight success story, however. Tons of scrutiny and a shoulder injury besieged Ewers in his maiden season as Texas’ starter.
When he didn’t lived up to the hype, instead of going into the tank, Ewers recommitted himself to the game, changed his diet, made massive strides in 2023, and now has the Longhorns two wins away from a national championship.
That whirlwind and Ewers’ swift rally from such adversity under such a critical microscope should be extremely educational for the impressionable Manning — whether his career blossoms at Texas or elsewhere.
At least for now, it looks like Manning is staying put. That could change with potential lucrative NIL offers and Ewers returning for one more season. With such a loaded 2024 NFL Draft class at the quarterback position, another fine season for the Longhorns next year could mean Ewers positions himself as a potential No. 1 overall pick in 2025.
We’ll see if Manning can stay patient for that long. If he does, there aren’t many better scenarios for a young QB with top-tier talent than playing for an offensive guru like Steve Sarkisian in the SEC.