The long cold wait for spring football is here. The clock is ticking down and until the annual Red and White spring game get under way at L. T. Houchens Smith Stadium in Bowling Green. The Western Kentucky Hilltoppers are rolling in faff of a season where they saw their team win the schools first ever bowl game in two appearances, their QB break school and Conference USA records and saw the school knock off a top 25 opponent on the road in the last week of the season. For WKU the expectations on the Hill couldn’t be much bigger and with the return of Senior Brandon Doughty the Tops faithful are looking for a very, very strong 2015-2016 campaign.
Brandon Doughty led the Nation in passing yards (4,344) passing touchdowns (44) and ranked 3rd in attempts and completions (510/344) and posting ehh a meager 6th in passing efficiency at 163.5. Doughty and the HillTopper Athletic department after last season ended applied for a 6th year of eligibility for the 6’3″ 209 pound QB. Doughty has had a long offseason training program where he has worked with Topper strength coaches who have been at the NFL level to get bulkier, faster, and more velocity on the football. For the Tops it is imperative to keep BD12 healthy if Western plans to chase a 10 win season or even more.
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All of that being said if Goodness forbid Doughty goes down in Spring or Summer ball, or in the first few games of the season heres how the HillToppers depth chart plays out. WKU has four quarterbacks on their roster including Doughty. Backup to number 12 is going to be Nelson Fishback. Fishback who is the heir to the throne of WKU QB after Doughty graduates. Fishback saw some game action during the Bobby Petrino experiment. However Doughty was able to bring back the starting job from the now Red Shirt Junior. Following Fishback will be both redshirt freshman in Drew Eckels and Will Campbell. Eckels was in last years signing class and has never seen college type play. Campbell is a Community College transfer and will vie for the third spot on the depth chart with Eckels.
While the back half of the WKU depth chart hasn’t been tested, with second year head coach Jeff Brohm at the helm it is certainly not a nerve racking as it would be with a new head man. Doughty is talk of the town and maybe college football. However, will he be able to withstand the spot light and provide a just as thrilling if not more 6th year campaign? All our answers and new ones will hopefully arise when WKU takes the field Saturday morning.