No matter how good your are, there is usually someone out there who is better. That is however, unless your name is Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, or maybe even Tim Tebow. The world of College Football is no different than any other sport. Recruiting is year round and no matter how safe you think your job is, there is some young cocky freshman that think he can come in and take your job.
Looking through some of the teams this year, I have found some quarterbacks who might be looking over their shoulder this year at either a young freshman, or even a transfer that has to sit out this year.
|Fans have Mallett not
Dick on their mind
For the last two seasons, the Arkansas Razorbacks relied on the running back tandem of Darren McFadden and Felix Jones to carry their offense. They went even as far as to line up McFadden at quarterback in the Wildhog formation and let him run the offense. With new coach Bobby Petrino, he will bring a passing attack to Arkansas which should put more pressure on Casey Dick to get the job done. Dick was never a polished passer throwing for 1700 yards, 18 touchdowns, and 10 interceptions in 2007, and I think he will be a little over his head in Petrino's system.
Casey Dick has been the brunt of a lot of jokes and criticisms from Razorback fans. In 2006 he split time with Mitch Mustain, and when Mustain transferred after the season, he was the full time starter in 2007. Casey is a senior this year, and the person directly behind him in the depth chart is his brother Nathan. No, Nathan is not going to take his job, but Razorback fans are already drooling for the 2009 season when Michigan transfer Ryan Mallett becomes eligible. When the Razorbacks struggle, and they will this year, Dick will once again hear the boo birds from the hometown fans which will not make his job any easier.
When I attended the 2006 Orange Bowl between Penn State and Florida State, I thought I saw a glimpse of the future for Seminoles fan with the way Drew Weatherford played. At that time he was a redshirt freshman and I thought he had the arm and the mobility to be a top notch college football quarterback. Combined in 2006 and 2007 he has thrown for 21 touchdowns and 14 interceptions while having his best completion percentage year his redshirt freshman year.
Now it is 3 seasons and a few injuries later and Weatherford is hoping to make it through the 2008 season as the starting quarterback. Drew is coming off a knee injury that had him miss the entire spring. He no longer has to worry about Xavier Lee, since he has transferred, but if Weatherford struggles the Seminoles could look to the future and play a younger quarterback. Fans are already wondering if Christian Ponder or incoming freshman E.J. Manuel should get reps.
I have been a big fan of Stephen McGee ever since he had that gutsy performance against the Longhorns back in 2005. He's a polished runner of the option with good smarts and a decent arm. So why is he on this list? McGee was a big supporter of former Aggie coach Dennis Franchione and he made it pretty clear that he wasn't happy when Franchione left. And why would he? He was the center piece of his offense.
|McGee's backing of
Franchione could be his undoing
Now new head coach, Mike Sherman, comes to College Station and things could be different for McGee. After two solid seasons, his job was opened up and now could be in jeopardy. Sophomore Jerrod Johnson, a speedy big quarterback with a strong arm has been challenging McGee for the starting job. All signs right now point to McGee keeping the job, but don't expect it to be set in stone. A slip up here or there and Johnson could see the field for good.
In my opinion, a two quarterback system is only good if the quarterbacks are of the same breed and similar skill set. If you have a guy who is a slasher like say Tyrod Taylor, and another who is a passer, like Sean Glennon, I don't think it is good for your team. It is too easy for teams to predict what you are going to do as an offense when you have either quarterback in. But whoever is the #1 quarterback at Virginia Tech is not going to feel safe at all in that position.
Last season, Glennon lost his job to Taylor after his poor performance against LSU and expressed it to the media that he was not happy with Coach Beamer's decision. He later won his job back and led the Hokies to an ACC Title and an Orange Bowl apperence. Many Hokie fans think that Glennon doesn't have what it takes to win the big game in their minds. But he did win the ACC Title game against Boston College, and if not for a defensive breakdown in the last 4 minutes of the game, they would've beaten Boston College in the regular season also.
Tyrod reminds Tech fans of the past...of Michael Vick. They see the explosiveness and the creativity he brings to the field since he can make plays with his feet. But in the Orange Bowl he looked lost and it wasn't his fault. Quarterbacks need to get in a rhythm and by swapping the two in and out, that does not allow them to get in a rhythm in the offense. But I have a feeling that we will be seeing both of them play this year, and I can promise you that both will be out there afraid of making mistakes and getting pulled.
I saved the most surprising candidate for last. In 2007 this quarterback led his team within 14 points of a BCS National Title, and most pundits (myself included) thought that coming into the 2007 season that Todd Boeckman was going to be the weak link on the Buckeye offense. Not only was he not the weakest link, Boeckman was one of the most effiecnt passers in all of the NCAA for a good portion of the season but struggled down the stretch throwing 6 interceptions to only 2 touchdowns in his last three games against Illinois, Michigan, and LSU.
I suspect Boeckman will bounce back, but there is a huge shadow lurking behind him. It is the shadow of the #1 recruit in the nation Terrelle Pryor. Buckeye fans are already licking their chops at the mere thought of Pryor taking the field. Many know that Pryor still needs to polish his passing game, but won't hesitate to wonder and possibly call for him if Boeckman struggles. Plus, it has already been speculated that Pryor will see some time ala Tim Tebow and his freshman year. So if he does well, that will only help his case to get on the field earlier.
The Buckeyes have a lot of talent returning and fans are expecting another Big Ten title and possibly a 3rd straight shot at a BCS title, but will it be Boeckman behind center at the end of the year? I would bet so...but you never know.