2011 College Football Position Overview – Top Quarterbacks
There is not a more visible position on the football field than quarterback. The signal caller, for better or worse, is prescribed equal parts adoration and derision, depending on how the team is performing. Today, we will focus on those quarterbacks who have risen to the top of the sport.
Andrew Luck - Jr. - Stanford
Superlatives have become superfluous in the description of the Stanford star quarterback. Luck, who broke onto the scene as a freshman in 2009, took the college football world by storm in 2010. There simply isn’t a better quarterback currently on a college campus. Possessing every skill imaginable, Luck crafted a brilliant 2010 campaign. Luck completed over 70 percent of his passes, throwing for 3,338 yards and 32 touchdowns. Following a marvelous performance in the Orange Bowl and the eventual departure of head coach Jim Harbaugh to the NFL, it was a foregone conclusion in the eyes of many that Luck would skip his final two seasons in Palo Alto and become the consensus number one draft pick. It didn’t happen. To the surprise of all, Luck returned to school, and as a consequence, became the front-runner to win the Heisman Trophy as college football’s finest player. Luck can make every throw on the field, and he brings a new reality to the term “coach on the field.”
Landry Jones - Jr. - Oklahoma
Landry Jones’ college career didn’t begin as he had anticipated. Thrown into action in the opener of the 2009 season following an injury to reigning Heisman winner Sam Bradford, the then-redshirt freshman had to learn on the fly. Fast forward to the 2011 campaign and there may not be a more potent quarterback in the country than Mr. Jones. Jones’ 2010 numbers were simply mind-boggling. The Sooner quarterback completed 65 percent of his passes, threw for 38 touchdowns, and accounted for an astounding 4,718 yards. For context, that figure is the 12th highest passing-yard number in the last decade, just two yards behind former teammate Bradford’s Heisman winning performance from 2008. Jones was awarded the 2010 Sammy Baugh Award. Statistical variance and award notwithstanding, the Sooners are looking for another year of development from Jones. While his stats were gaudy, Jones had the propensity to throw interceptions at important moments last season. If he becomes more consistent, there isn’t any question that Jones can become the third Oklahoma quarterback to win the Heisman in the past decade.
Kellen Moore - Sr. - Boise State
Kellen Moore has become a staple in Boise. It seems like he’s been playing on the blue turf for the past decade. Moore, who started for Chris Petersen’s club as redshirt freshman, has had an illustrious career for the Broncos. The first road game of his career saw the southpaw throw for 386 yards and three touchdowns in a victory over Oregon in Eugene. It was a sign of things to come. Over three seasons, Moore has thrown for over 10,000 yards, completed nearly 70 percent of his passes, thrown 99 career touchdowns, and has just 19 career interceptions. As for his record as a starter? Try on 38-2 for size, not to mention a BCS bowl victory in 2009. Suffice it to say, Kellen Moore is a man among boys in the upper echelon of college football. The 2011 season will be an interesting finale to his storied career. Having lost his primary two receivers to the NFL, Moore will be asked to shoulder a greater load. If history is any indication, that shouldn’t be a problem.
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