You wouldn’t need more than an elementary school diploma to know that the quarterback position is consistently the most significant slot on the football field.
So while the Trevone Boykins and Connor Cooks of college football gear for monster years, I’ve pinpointed my share of quarterbacks that acquire a minuscule chip resting on their shoulder heading into 2015.
Taysom Hill – BYU
The Cougars aren’t strangers to participating in games before the weekend kicks off, so if you’ve postponed your Friday festivities long enough to see Hill lead his offense, then you’ve already scooped an idea of how dynamic he can be.
Quite frankly, at 6’2″ and 232 pounds, he resembles Tim Tebow nearly to a tee. A sturdy frame with cunning shiftiness, Hill’s one of the entertaining dual-threat quarterbacks.
The problem lies with health, however.
Since his regime began in 2012, knee injuries have impeded play, once in the opening frame and also a season ago during BYU’s loss to Utah State.
While he’s backed by the Cougar faithful heading into 2015, he’ll hope for health as Bronco Mendenhall’s core awaits a steady string of adequate opposition.
BYU has a variety of foes coming its way with the likes of Nebraska and Michigan in regards to the Big 10, the PAC 12 favorite in UCLA, capable MWC competition in Boise and Utah State, with ECU, Cincinnati and Missouri rounding out the schedule.
One of the most rigid agendas in all of college football, I for one desire a glimpse of how Hill performed in 2013 when he started 13 games, throwing for nearly 3,000 yards while rushing for over 1,300.
Jacoby Brissett – NC State
There won’t be many claims that the ACC is titled the “Quarterback Conference,” but when you weigh in on an already-efficient Clemson defense pairing up with DeShaun Watson, Georgia Tech’s Justin Thomas and now Florida State’s Everett Golson, it certainly encompasses several to keep a close eye on.
However, that should only ignite the fire for North Carolina State’s Jacoby Brissett. And when you piece together what they have in store via 2015, the Pack should keep the nation on its toes.
The fans, so fixated on the versatility of quarterbacks like Oregon’s Marcus Mariota and Auburn’s Nick Marshall, never truly grappled on to the ability of Brissett, but the numbers posted in 2014 speak for themselves.
Passing for 2,606 yards complemented by 529 on the ground, the 6’4″playmaker also recorded a 23-5 TD-INT ratio, and with a band of receivers returning for 2015, NC State could emerge out of nowhere if Brissett builds off of last season in his inaugural year as the Wolfpack starter.
Brandon Allen – Arkansas
The Razorbacks supply a top rushing attack in Alex Collins and Jonathan Williams–both 1,000-yard rushers from 2014–so Brett Bielema’s stamped his credo in the backfield for next fall.
What really needs to glue the offense together lies with quarterback Brandon Allen.
For a team expected to finish better than LSU, Mississippi State and Ole Miss, the pressure mounts for a guy that has really yet to stick out. Now that Collins and Williams have solidified their capability, it’ll make game planning a tad easier for opposing defenses.
This is where Allen needs to manage games and remain collected.
He’s not a quarterback hell bent on stretching secondaries (a 6.7 yards per attempt in 2014), but the dink-and-dunk blueprint has worked out quite well.
For a team that squandered a plethora of late leads last season and expectations on the incline, Allen’s now the primary X-Factor for turning seven wins into nine or ten in 2015.