The origin of the sporophyte in land plants represents a fundamental phase in plant evolution. Today this subject is controversial, and scarcely considered in textbooks and journals of botany, in spite of its importance. There are two conflicting theories concerning the origin of the alternating generations in land-plants: the "antithetic" theory and the "homologous" theory. These have never been fully resolved, although, on the ground of the evidences on the probable ancestors of land plants, the antithetic theory is considered more plausible than the homologous theory. However, additional phylogenetic dilemmas are the evolution of bryophytes from algae and the transition from these first land plants to the pteridophytes. All these very large evolutionary jumps are discussed on the basis of the phyletic gradualist neo-Darwinian theory and other genetic evolutionary mechanisms.