In order for any quarterback to be successful, he has to have precise timing with his receivers, a feel for his targets' speed and general strengths.
Texas fans saw first-hand last year how a successful quarterback-receiver connection can benefit an offense, with Colt McCoy and Jordan Shipley seemingly able to read the other's mind, making adjustments in mid-play. Last weekend, a possible quarterback of Texas' future had a chance to work with some of his future targets, with 2011 Longhorn quarterback commitment David Ash taking part in a Texas mini-camp, where he was able to work with top targets like fellow Longhorn commitment Jaxon Shipley.
The 6-4, 195-pound Ash, a deeply spiritual young man, missed the first part of the camp session while he attended church. Once he did hit the UT campus, he immediately began to bond with some of his future teammates.
"Obviously, Jaxon caught my attention. I was having fun throwing to him. The guy can play," Ash said. "It was a lot of fun throwing to him, talking to the offensive linemen that came. The tight end from El Paso, (M.J.) McFarland, was looking good. He's a tall and rangy guy. He had a hamstring pull but he looked god. It's just a good group of kids and I'm excited to be a part of it.
"It was a good camp. It's always a good time to go down to Austin, see the coaches, see some of the future players for Texas. It was good to get to know them a little better, have some fun, throw the ball around."
Ash, from Belton, was the Longhorns' top target at quarterback target for the 2011 class. He picked up a scholarship offer during the Horns' first junior day and committed immediately. Ash has been a regular visitor to the Forty Acres for camps and Longhorn home games, and he enjoyed the chance to work with his future position coach, Greg Davis, at Sunday's camp.
"He's just such a great teacher. I feel like throughout my whole life, God has blessed me, put me in position to have fine coaches in high school and even in middle school," Ash said. "Now God's going to bless me with a good one in college. Coach Davis is a great teacher, with things like footwork. He tells you when you get it right and when you get it wrong. He's a quality coach and he's been doing it a long time."
With the UT mini-camp now in the rearview mirror, Ash will turn his focus towards summer workouts with his Belton teammates. The group meets for 6 a.m. workouts five days a week and also spends time playing 7-on-7 ball. Ash is currently working his way back to full strength after off-season knee surgery, and he's focusing on rounding out his game in preparation for what should be a highly successful senior season.
"I'm trying to get my feet quicker. I'm always trying to be a well rounded quarterback, work on fundamentals, footwork, the mental part, my leadership skills. Everything," Ash said. "You have to be the hardest worker out there, have to do things right. It's the fundamentals, the mental part of the game and footwork. Speed and everything comes into play."
Ranked as the nation's 11th-best pro-style quarterback prospect by Rivals.com, Ash committed to Texas over a handful of other offers. Before committing to Texas, he shied away from most of the recruiting attention as he focused his attention on the Longhorns, and Ash couldn't be more thrilled with the way things worked out.
"I'm extremely happy. I'm overjoyed to be going to Texas," Ash said. "It's been a dream of mine for a long time to go to Texas. I didn't even really look at a lot of other schools. I tried to not ignore anybody in case I needed a back-up plan. But I wanted Texas, I feel like God blessed me to where I've always wanted to go."