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The Texas State defense makes a key stop in the Bobcats homecoming game against the Southern Miss Golden Eagles. The Bobcat defense will look to reload on defensive side of the ball with a couple of key players returning on the team.
Daily Record photo by Gerald Castillo

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Lincoln Pare celebrates after the play in Texas State’s game against Arkansas State. Pare will help lead a strong running back room as the Bobcats enter a new era under new head coach GJ Kinne along with a re-vamped offense.
Daily Record photo by Gerald Castillo

New era begins at Texas State as Bobcats start spring practice

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Spring is in the air which means Texas State will be breaking out the pads to prepare for the 2023 football season.

This time there will be a new regime in San Marcos as Head Coach GJ Kinne takes over the program after leading the Incarnate Word Cardinals to their best season in program history last year.

This year, there will be many questions to be answered as Texas State looks to be bowl eligible for the first time in program history.

With that said, here are a few story-lines to keep track of during the spring season.

The battle for the quarterback position (again)

Since the departure of Tyler Jones following the 2016 season, the Bobcats have been plagued with finding a consistent starting quarterback.

Over the past six seasons, six different quarterbacks have taken the starting job with no one being able to hold down the position.

This year will see a new pool of candidates make their case for the starting position as four players will attempt to state their case to be the starter.

One of the most talked about players over the offseason is Arkansas transfer quarterback Malik Hornsby.

“He is a dynamic guy,” Kinne said. “You see arm talent, the high school production, and the film at Arkansas. The talent is there… an extremely hard worker and the speed is real. We have been timing those guys during offseason workouts and he is right up there with the fastest guys on the team.”

Hornsby will be joined by fellow transfer quarterbacks in Ty Evans and Cj Rodgers.

Evans is the quarterback most familiar with Texas State since joining the program back in the 2021 season.

Despite not playing in two seasons, Evans, a former Elite 11 quarterback, will look to make a run for the starter position.

Making the I-35 Trip

During signing day, seven players from the 2022 UIW football team followed Kinne and the rest of the coaching staff from the comforts of downtown San Antonio and up the I-35 corridor to be at San Marcos.

Out of the seven players who contributed to the 2022 UIW team, five of them, Caleb Johnson, Nash Jones, Emeka Obigbo, Jimeto Obigbo and Dorian Strawn are a part of the offensive line.

“Some of the UIW guys are the best guys we signed,” Kinne said. “Starting with the offensive line, at least three had Power 5 offers that we fought off to get them here … they are really talented and that has shown with them being some of the strongest guys in the program.”

Kaleb Culp and Kole Wilson also join the team looking to make a big impact.

Restocking the cupboard

The Bobcats will look to replace a stout defense lineup from last year that lost several key players who either graduated or are playing at the next level.

Leading tackler Sione Tupou, leader in sacks Nelson Mbanasor, and leader in interceptions Kordell Rogers have all moved on from Texas State leaving a good-sized hole for the Bobcat defense.

But a few key pieces still remain.

Defensive back Tory Spears, third leading tackler with 77 total tackles and one interception, and outside linebacker Jordan Revels, 69 tackles and 4.5 sacks, have opted to stay at Texas State along with linebackers Ben Bell and Brian Holloway.

Add in UIW transfer defensive back Culp, who was second in tackles at UIW with 81, the Bobcats has a chance of simply reloading on defense rather than rebuilding.

Texas State starts spring practice tomorrow at Bobcat Stadium.

cmcwilliams Twitter: @ColtonBMc

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