Going into the 2018 season, a highly rated recruit was all but guaranteed the starting QB job. Whether this guaranty was due to him being the best QB in the room or due to a promise made on the recruiting trail, he was going to be the starter. He was highly rated, sought after by many programs, had all the measurables and a ton of talent. But there was something missing. From all accounts he didn’t put in the work necessary to be a successful Big 12 QB. It takes hard work. It takes hours and hours of time watching video. More time working with coaches to learn and evolve. This kind of work ethic makes the QB better as well as the team around him. He works, they work. They respect the work and the effort. They want to run through a wall for him. That didn’t happen. Talent carried the day for awhile until the wheels started to fall off. Confidence waned. Then he started pressing. Then he missed Reagor wide open in Austin and the wheels didn’t just completely fall off, they imploded into a million little pieces. The season that rested on his shoulders was lost. What does this have to do with Delton? Let me explain. Remember, this is only my theory but if you are rational I think you can see the merits within. GP was not going to have a repeat of 2018’s unmitigated disaster. He wants leadership and character and football intelligence at the helm. He saw what he had in the QB room. An injured Collins, a still recovering Rogers and a true freshman in Duggan. Also what he saw was a severe lack of leadership and role models in that room. By default, barring a big turnaround by Rogers, Duggan was probably the best option that was upright. But GP saw talent in him. Knew he could be something special but he needed to learn how to be a D1 QB. Snyder and GP talk regularly, it would be safe to assume. Or at least enough for GP to hear about the work ethic of one Alex Delton. Snyder lets GP know that Delton would be available and could be a role model and a good example in a young QB room. This prompts the grad transfer in by Delton. Now GP has senior leadership to help with the young QB’s but he couldn’t tell Delton he was never going to play. He had to give him a shot to earn a spot if he put in the work both on and off the field GP needed from him. Delton did what Snyder said he would and became a monster in the film room, the weight room and the locker room. He showed the younger guys what it takes to be successful. Remember, he was in a room with QB’s vastly more talented than him, but not better prepared. Yet. GP told us all through spring and fall camp how great Delton was doing. Leading the room, putting in the work and showing out in practice. Was it true? Mostly, probably. But, remember, it was basically Delton and an 18 year old kid who normally would be in high school heading to prom rather than in a spring camp at a major program and a guy with a foot that may or may not have been working. Delton looked okay but Duggan was learning. The talk about new offenses, the veer and shoot, a vertical passing attack were just words without meaning. For any of you that hang on GP’s last word, don’t. He’s saying whatever he wants to get the outcome he desires. He’s not worried about what you or anyone feels they are entitled to know. What he did was promote Delton as the guy to make Duggan and Rogers work harder. He needed a QB room built on leadership, a superior work ethic and something the team would rally around. Back to 2018, the prevailing rumors around the program were that the locker room was a disaster because QB1 wouldn’t put in the time. Except on Fortnite. That couldn’t happen again in 2019. Delton taught, the QB room had a chance to learn. Those that did moved up, those that didn’t moved down. Talent and stars weren’t the only deciding factors. Delton, after doing what he was asked, had to be given a shot to play. But not just for what he had done in camp, but also to keep teaching. Game prep is different than camp. How to prepare, how to lead the team on the field, how to work with coaches to adjust. All important. Duggan and Rogers had to keep learning. Delton got his chance. Max put in the work necessary and Max outplayed him. Max earned the team. He was the next one - not just because of talent but because of learning the craft and embracing it. Delton gave it his all but he just wasn’t good enough to hold on. He didn’t steal an inordinate amount of valuable reps from anyone. Not enough that would have made any significant difference on the season. We know Duggan and Delton were splitting reps. Delton earned reps by being a mentor and a leader. But someone was getting those reps regardless. They weren’t going into the season with one unproven QB with any practice experience. None but Delton had game experience. When Delton was told he was no longer needed as a player he left. I’m sure he had had enough of football and the pain and work that goes along with it. Enough of the yelling, early mornings and late nights plus school. He wasn’t going to the NFL. Did he leave his team high and dry? For sure. Did it hurt in any way? No. Max took every snap the rest of the season. Delton leaving didn’t change anything. You all didn’t like him before he left. You didn’t like him after he left. No change in any way. So to my last point. Many of you hated the Delton experiment. Many of you wonder why GP didn’t get a different grad transfer. Maybe he could have. Maybe we get someone that leads us to 8-4 instead of 5-7. Would that have felt better today? Sure. But next year Duggan would be a redshirt freshman with little experience and possibly no one that taught him what it takes. Would we be better off? I say without a doubt, no. Delton wasn’t a GP blind spot. Delton was a calculated plan. He was a means to an end. The frogs are better off with 12 games under Duggan’s belt as well as what he may have learned from Delton about how to be a leader and a teammate.