There’s been some grumbling in the BBN after Drew Barker was listed as the starting quarterback on this morning’s depth chart. Drew went down with a back injury after the first series on Saturday and was taken to the hospital for evaluation. In his place, backup Stephen Johnson went 17-22 for 310 yards, three touchdowns, and zero interceptions, and also carried the ball ten times for 51 yards. As you would expect, Stoops was asked about Drew’s condition to open his weekly press conference, but didn’t say much.
“We’ll see how the week goes on,” Stoops said. “I’m in no position to talk about that right now. He had an MRI, he’s going to consult with our doctors and some specialists and we’ll get to the bottom of it and see what’s best for him.”
Stoops said the hit Drew took on Saturday aggravated some lingering issues in his back that go back to last week at Florida and even earlier in the summer.
“He’s had some issues that were lingering, so it’s not just one hit. If you look at the hit, it doesn’t look anything too much but I think you put that and compound it on some the back problems that he’s had, even going back to last week at Florida,” Stoops said. “He had a few issues come up in the summer, a couple things that were bothering him. Some of this is chronic.”
Now, the question everyone in the Big Blue Nation has today: if Drew is healthy, will Stephen Johnson play?
“I would assume so,” Stoops said. “I thought [Johnson] was really exceptional. He started a little shaky on the first possession. After that first possession, he really settled in and played an exceptional game. He made good decisions, he was poised, he was accurate on the deep ball, he got the ball on the bubble screens where you have the run/pass options (RPOs) and the RPOs where we get the ball down the field to CJ [Conrad]. He made very good decisions and he was very poised and he was accurate.”
“Drew is listed as the starter on the depth chart for a reason.”
Okay, then. Glad we cleared that up.