With Case McCoy making a strong case for the Texas starting quarterback job at UT’s spring game, we look at eight high-profile younger brothers of former college football stars and their future prospects. – Tracy Wholf
Note: All years are what the players will be in the fall
Famous Sibling: Colt McCoy, Texas QB (2005-09)
Skinny: After going 5-7 in the 2010 college football season, seeing the name “McCoy” painted on the back of a spring jersey almost seemed like a tasteless April Fool’s prank for Texas fans, but it was no joke. Former Longhorn phenom Colt McCoy wasn’t suited up to play, rather his younger brother Case took the field, throwing for 124 yards and one touchdown in the spring game. Garrett Gilbert should be worried, especially after his showing of 76 yards and an interception. If Case keeps up his strong quarterback campaign, he could build a McCoy legacy at Texas.
Famous Sibling: Jordan Shipley, Texas WR (2006-09)
Skinny: Jaxon made his motives clear when he committed to Texas a full year earlier than the deadline for the 2011 recruiting class. Naturally, he’s also best friends with Case McCoy. It’s hard to say how he’ll compare to his big brother, but Rivals.com ranked Jaxon as the ninth-best receiver in the country and the overall 62nd best recruit. Jaxon knows he’ll be compared to his older brother and he doesn’t mind. Said Jaxon in January: “Who doesn’t want to be like [Jordan] as a receiver? I’ve got high goals, and I’m going to chase those goals and chase those dreams. I’m really striving to break his records at Texas. I don’t know if that will happen, but it’s just good vision for me and something I can go by, something I can dangle in front of my face and try to go after.”
Famous Sibling: Pat White, West Virginia QB (2005-08)
School: West Virginia
Skinny: Coley saw limited action as a redshirt in 2008 and 2009. He has yet to make an impact on the team the way his older brother did, and it didn’t help matters that Coley got switched to wide receiver last year. One thing’s for sure: If anyone can figure out how to utilize him, it’s new offensive coordinator and Air Raid mastermind Dana Holgorsen.
Famous Sibling: Todd Marinovich, USC QB (1988-90)
Skinny: The name “Marinovich” is notorious in football, due it part to Mikhail’s father Marv, who became one of the NFL’s first strength and conditioning coaches and then molded his son Todd into the perfect specimen (ESPN listed Marv Marinovich as one of “the worst sports fathers” ever). Todd went on to have a short-lived, albeit glorious career with USC and was drafted ahead of Brett Farve in the 1991 draft, but a drug problem ended his career prematurely. People rolled their eyes when Mikhail was arrested in 2008 for breaking into a Syracuse equipment room and then became a part-owner of a hookah bar, but he did have 30 tackles and three sacks last year and at 6’5” and 245 lbs., Mikhail will continue to anchor the defensive line as a starter in 2011. Marinovich has his sights on the NFL saying, “I want to be the successful Marinovich.” Um, ouch?
Famous Sibling: Marcus Trufant, Washington State CB (1999-2002)
Skinny: With Pro-Bowl brother Marcus playing in town for the Seattle Seahawks, Desmond has a well-paved road to the NFL. As a starter last season for the Huskies, Desmond recorded six tackles and an interception during the OT victory against Oregon State, as well as a personal best – nine tackles – against Stanford. Marcus was the 11th overall draft pick in 2003 and Desmond could be selected in the 2013 NFL Draft, although he is not currently considered a top prospect.
Famous Sibling: Blaine Gabbert, Missouri QB (2008-10)
Year: Redshirt Freshman
Skinny: The younger Gabbert spent time on the scout team in 2010 and is looking to compete for the starting QB position for the 2011 season after his big bro went pro. Many Missouri insiders think his arm is even stronger than Blaine’s. Tyler is currently listed at no. 3 on the spring depth chart, but he clearly has the pedigree and stamina to elevate his status. During the spring game, Tyler was 20-of-27 passing for 206 yards, no interceptions and executed a 64-yard touchdown pass. It looks like the battle between Gabbert and James Franklin could last all summer.
Famous Sibling: Yvenson Bernard, Oregon State RB (2004-07)
School: North Carolina
Skinny: This 5’9”, 198 lbs. running back from Florida should be a good burst of energy for North Carolina. Ranked as the second-best running back in Florida by Rivals.com, Giovanni dominated the turf as a junior in high school, rushing for 1,528 yards and 18 touchdowns on 160 carries. He missed most of his senior year due to a hamstring injury and Tar Heel faithful hope this won’t be a reoccurring problem. He didn’t carry the ball once last season but with leading rushers Johnny White and Shaun Draughn both graduating, Bernard will definitely have opportunities to contribute next fall.
Famous Sibling: Paul Posluszny, Penn State LB (2003-06)
School: Notre Dame
Skinny: It’s hard to live in your brother’s shadow, especially as a linebacker, when he’s a Butkus award-winner. David hasn’t had nearly the career at Notre Dame that Paul had at Penn State. He did not see any time as a freshman and played 10 games in 2009 and logged three tackles. Last season he had only a single tackle. Hopefully, head coach Brian Kelly will give this Posluszny a final year to remember.