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Page 125 text:
.,.. PF: - t In one weekend, Gardere became the most celebrated player since Eric Met- calf. He was labeled " Peter the Great, " " Saint Peter, " a savior and a legend. " I wouldn ' t call myself a savior. Without the linemen, backfield and receivers we wouldn ' t have an offense, " Gardere said. Gardere ' s heroics didn ' t end against Oklahoma. The following week in Ar- kansas he directed a win over the Ra- zorbacks, completing 16 out of 20 pass- es for 247 yards and one 61 -yard touchdown. Unfortunately, Gardere had some difficulties maintaining his high level of performance. In the Houston game, he suffered a bruised shoulder. Although he started against the TCU Horned Frogs, his performance was less than impressive, as he completed 9 of 16 passes for only 21 yards. He was even- tually replaced by Donovan Forbes, who rallied Texas to a 31-17 come- from-behind victory. In the week preceding the Baylor game, the team was in the midst of a mild quarterback controversy. Forbes, who was honored as the Most Outstand- ing Southwest Offensive Player of the Week, was being considered as a start- er. However, Gardere eventually start- ed, and threw an errant pass that was intercepted and run back for a Baylor touchdown. Forbes, who later replaced Gardere, also had a pass intercepted for a touchdown. Baylor ' s 50-7 march over Texas was the lowest point in the Long- horns ' season. Besides the shoulder injury and the Baylor game, Gardere had a successful if not a productive year. He completed 58 percent of his passes for more than 1500 yards passing, the most ever for a UT freshman quarterback. With one year under his belt, Gardere would be expected to lead a much improved and experienced team in 1990. Johnny Walker, said he believed time was all Gardere needed. " For a freshman quar- terback, he ' s done well, " Walker said. " He ' s become a leader. He just needs more experience. " Sang Yun CAUGHT IN THE BACKFIELD: Peter Gardere scrambles to evade a Sooner defender. - photo by Richard Goebel. FIRING A PASS: Peter Gardere tries to complete a reception against Texas Tech. photo by Hannes Hacker Quarterback 121
Page 124 text:
THE RISE AND FALL Or ' PETER THE GREAT The 1989 Texas Longhorns entered the season in search of the road that once led the Longhorns to several con- ference titles. After a disappointing sea- son in 1988, the team was full of hope. In their first game, the Longhorns suffered a discouraging loss (6-27) against the nationally ranked Colorado Buffaloes. However, during the game, Texas fans saw a glimpse of a young gun by the name of Peter Gardere, who eventually catapulted Texas into the ranks of the nation ' s top 25 college football teams. A third-generation Longhorn, Gardere came into the season projected as a third-string quarterback. Not much was expected of him: " He played better than we expected him to coming into the season, " offensive coordinator Lynn Amedee said. Physically, Gardere possessed all the attributes wanted in a collegiate quar- terback: mobility, size and strength. In the game against Oklahoma, faced with a crucial third-and-long situation, Gardere eluded a rush and scrambled for an 18-yard run and a first down. " I try not to think about the situation when I ' m in there. You really don ' t have time to, " Gardere said. Although he was a red-shirt freshman, his ma- turity belied his inexperience. But it wasn ' t until after the Texas-OU game that Texas fans truly acknowledged his talent. In the game against Oklahoma, Gardere completed 1 5 of 23 passes for a total of 144 yards. Moreover, he passed for two touchdowns with a connection to senior wide receiver Tony Jones and the miraculous winning throw to junior wide receiver Johnny Walker. FALLING BACK: Redshirt freshman quarter- back Peter Gardere fakes a handoff to freshman tailback Adrian Walker during a play-action pass. photo by Hannes Hacker 120 Quarterback
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