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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Quarterback EPAs: Return to Normalcy?

by Brent Blackwell

October proved to be a month of course-correction.  Pre-season favorites dismissed from Heisman consideration have slowly climbed their way back towards the top, as we see Matt Barkley (10th), Denard Robinson (16th), and Tyler Wilson (29th) all in the top 30.  Landry Jones seems back on track, and even Houston’s David Piland has found the black.  After September, I wondered if that would be possible.

The Big XII dominates the standings again, this time with 4 of the top 6 ranked QBs.  Texas Tech’s woefully underappreciated Seth Doege returns to the top of the board with +93.89 points.  Just behind him is KSU’s Collin Klein with +90.03, though Klein is the NEPA leader at +102.32.  With WVU’s Geno Smith and Baylor’s Nick Florence not far behind, it’s a good year for watching quarterbacks in the Big XII.

Other names near the top include NIU’s Jordan Lynch, who is doing as much with his legs (1049y / 13TD rushing) as his arm (1710y / 13:3 TD:INT ratio), Nevada’s Cody Fajardo (over 2300 combined yards and 20 TD despite missing a game), and national yardage leader Rakeem Cato of Marshall, who has attempted twelve passes in the time it took you to read this sentence.

The names near the bottom teach us a valuable lesson: QBs should never associate themselves with the Kansas Jayhawks.  Current KU QB Dayne Crist has been 69 points worse than average this year.  The only QB within a TD of being as bad?  Colorado QB (and former Jayhawk) Jordan Webb.  Also in the -60 club are SMU’s Garrett Gilbert, the worst June Jones-coached QB since Ryan Leaf, and Idaho’s Dominique Blackman, who leads the nation this season in both interceptions thrown (13) and head coach careers killed (1).  Also, if you noticed, Gene Chizik shuffled some deck chairs.  You might not have noticed, because all deck chairs pretty much look the same when running for their lives away from SEC defensive linemen.

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