ARLINGTON, Texas -- Weeks after both Terry Bradshaw and Baker Mayfield took verbal jabs at his starting quarterback, Texas Longhorns coach Tom Herman said Tuesday that he noticed, and his players "file things away."
Speaking at Big 12 media days, Herman called outside criticism of Sam Ehlinger "irrelevant," but he intimated that it could fuel the junior quarterback's fire.
"I heard it," Herman said. "I would be lying to you if I told you I don't know what you're talking about. I certainly do, but it's irrelevant. ... It doesn't really faze us.
"I do know, you know, our guys file certain things away. ... Sam loves to play with a chip on his shoulder, and I'm sure he will use this to crank it up a notch."
Bradshaw, an alumnus of Louisiana Tech, said Ehlinger "ain't that good" while speaking at an alumni function last month.
"One year, they signed three [five-star] quarterbacks, and two are now gone. One is playing, and he ain't that good," said Bradshaw, an analyst for Fox NFL Sunday. "Really? Five-[star] and you watch 'em throw the football and ... they can't throw the football. I'll take our boys any day."
Texas opens the season against Louisiana Tech on Aug. 31.
"He couldn't beat Lake Travis, so I don't really care [about] his opinion on winning," said Mayfield, an alumnus of Lake Travis High School in Austin, Texas. "Westlake is a great program, but the two best quarterbacks to come out of there are Drew Brees and Nick Foles. Sam can stay down there in Texas."
Ehlinger attended rival Westlake High.
"That will stir the pot," said Mayfield, the 2017 Heisman Trophy winner. "He doesn't like me, and I hope he knows I don't like him either."
The Longhorns, who went 10-4 last season in their first double-digit-win campaign since 2009, play Oklahoma in the annual Red River Showdown on Oct. 12.
Ehlinger was asked Tuesday if he likes Mayfield.
"Yeah, I do," Ehlinger said. "I respect his game."
Ehlinger said he wasn't concerned about the comments from Bradshaw or Mayfield.
"I don't really care," Ehlinger said. "I just don't pay attention to it. It's not something that fills my brain because ultimately you control what you put in your brain, and that also affects how you go about your day. Leaving that out of my train of thought is something that I try to do."
Ehlinger said he modified his Twitter settings so that he reads mentions only from people he follows, so he doesn't see much criticism on social media. He said he deleted social media from his phone last season, and it helped him focus.
"People don't text me about it, really," Ehlinger said. "I don't look at it on any other forum. Obviously, I'll hear it, maybe an ESPN update about it. It's crazy. I don't deserve to be on an ESPN headline. I haven't done anything, so it's crazy."
As for playing with a chip on his shoulder?
"I try to carry that with me wherever I am because it shouldn't take any extra motivation to play to the best of your ability," Ehlinger said.