(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) In two years starting under center for Missouri Western, Travis Partridge has grown.
"He's studied a lot of film," Western offensive coordinator Tyler Fenwick said. "He knows where his reads are. He knows what to look for, and he's able to get the ball out faster."
When Partridge took over as starting quarterback in 2011, he was following the most prolific passer in Griffon history, Drew Newhart.
But instead of trying to distance himself from the Newhart legacy, he took advantage of it, and learned from him.
"Drew was experienced and he knew the offense, and Travis learned from him some of the little things of how he would prepare," Fenwick said.
The Griffons won nine games and made the playoffs in 2011, and Partridge thew 17 touchdowns to 11 interceptions.
Those numbers have improved dramatically in 2012: 25 touchdowns, 8 interceptions.
He's also become the MIAA's most efficient passer, and is the first Griffon quarterback to ever be named to the all-conference first team.
"I think the experience that he had last year, and going through the off-season and looking at film and looking at where his mistakes were, where the good plays were," Fenwick said. "Just evaluating everything when things were able to slow down in the off-season. Going into this season, I think it's been more second nature for him."
"Short memory. It's something I've always kind of lived up to, and said it," Partridge said. "You have to. As a quarterback, you're going to make mistakes. They're going to get you sometimes. You just have to rebound."
His dad, head coach Jerry Partridge, says Travis has the thankless job of being the coach's son, but he's shown this season that it is all earned.
"When you get near him, and see what he's about, and what kind of competitor he is, he is the best quarterback in our conference," Coach Partridge said.