NORMAN — A couple nights before Oklahoma's spring game in April, Trevor Knight and his dad spoke by telephone for about an hour and a half.
The father and son talked about life, faith, football and, of course, the intense quarterback competition that raged on through spring practices — and still continues more than a week into fall camp.
Knight, a redshirt freshman, was the youngest and least experienced of Oklahoma's quarterback candidates, behind junior Blake Bell and sophomore Kendal Thompson, but that night, he told his dad the full story of his transition in high school from a timid underclassman to a staunch, uncompromising leader.
Thompson broke his foot the first day of fall camp, leaving a two-man battle. Although Bell remains the favorite, Knight hasn't let up, displaying toughness and drive throughout a competition many assumed would be over by now. The leadership he developed during a trying junior year at San Antonio's Ronald Reagan High School continues to shape him today.
When Knight was a high-school freshman, he was called up to the varsity squad for its playoff games. He noticed that after the team ran through its inflatable tunnel and onto the field in pregame, many upperclassmen huddled at midfield and shouted profanity about their opponent.
The language shook — and shocked — the very religious Knight, but he wasn't in any position to do anything about it.
He became the starting quarterback as a sophomore, but still didn't feel comfortable standing up to what he saw as ugly, unnecessary vitriol.