Dalton looks to lead, earn respect

Andy Dalton was hanging out with friends, watching the No. 1 movie in America when he got the news he was named the No. 1 quarterback at TCU.”I was actually told in a movie … but I came up here on Sunday and that’s when they told me,” Dalton said. “I went and saw ‘Superbad.'”

The redshirt freshman beat out sophomore Marcus Jackson in a contested battle for the starting quarterback slot, opened by the graduation of Jeff Ballard.

While the Katy native begins to prepare for the season opener against Baylor in less than two weeks knowing that the starting position is his, he said he knows his place on the team will have to be earned through what got him here: hard work.

“I’ve already started to earn the respect of my teammates,” Dalton said. “I’ve just got to keep working hard and let them know that nothing is going to change. I’m still going to work hard and just prepare my best for Baylor. The coaches just saw something in me, and hopefully, my teammates can see that too.”

Although Dalton has secured the starting job, head coach Gary Patterson said the team expected Jackson to play between the third and sixth offensive series against Baylor – a typical practice of Patterson-led teams during the first game of the season.

“We treat both those guys as ones – we just made a decision,” Patterson said. “It was for various reasons and we’re just going to go on … We haven’t had a 10-win season yet where the second guy didn’t play.”

In addition to Dalton officially leading the first-team offense, Tuesday’s practice also saw the return of senior defensive end Tommy Blake.

Blake, a preseason All-American for multiple media outlets, missed several consecutive practices and was excused from the team for what was called “personal reasons.” While those reasons still remain unclear and unanswered, Patterson said Blake looked good in his first day back on the field.