Full Scale Sports

NCAAF: Corey Carmona’s Top 5 College Football Quarterbacks

College football is almost here, I can practically hear the roar of the crowds echoing in my ears as we gear up for another exciting season of NCCA football. I’ve already released my preseason Heisman favorites, link at the bottom of this article, now I’ve decided to break down the various positions & formulate a top 5 for you guys. It goes without saying that the most important position on the field is the quarterback so of course I decided to start with the signal callers.

5. Stephen Morris - Senior - Miami

Stephen Morris is a 6’2 214 pound senior quarterback for the Miami Hurricanes & I believe he’s one of college football’s elite quarterbacks. Morris is coming off one of the best statistical seasons for a quarterback in Miami history, completing over 58% of his passes with a 3 to 1 touchdown to interception ratio, but for some reason he’s being overlooked. Morris may not have the sex appeal like a Johnny Manziel but 3,300 yards with 21 tds & 7ints is impressive in its own way.

He’s extremely mobile & uses his athleticism to avoid the rush while keeping his eyes downfield looking for the open man. Watching Morris last year as well as his spring tape I noticed his footwork got crisper & he seems to be in total command of this offense. Morris is a kid that will open a ton of eyes this year as he’s been flying under the radar, but anyone who appreciates good quarterback plays has kept an eye on the 6’2 senior signal caller.

Miami has a shot this year to do something really special with its collection of young talent fused with the experience of seniors such as Morris. Stephen has elite arm-strength which is something scouts will drool over come combine time, but more than that he has the on the field smarts & leadership that you look for in a quarterback. While the Heisman may be a long shot for Morris I think it goes without saying that he’s one of college football’s elite quarterbacks.

4. Tajh Boyd - Senior - Clemson

One of my favorite players to watch in 2012 was a quarterback by the name of Tajh Boyd. Heading into his senior season, Tajh Boyd is on my shortlist of Heisman candidates & is probably a lock to be a first round selection in the 2014 NFL Draft. I personally felt like he should’ve entered this past draft but I will never come down on a guy for wanting to go back to school for his senior season.

As far as numbers go he has those, in 2012 Boyd threw for 3,896 yards with 36 touchdowns and 13 interceptions, can’t forget his 514 yards on the ground also. What’s most impressive about Boyd’s numbers is the consistency, as a sophomore in 2011 Boyd posted 3,828 yards with 33 touchdowns & 12 interceptions. One could make the argument that Boyd is a product of the system he plays in but when you look at his raw talents you can deny that this kid as a future at the next level.

While his arm isn’t going to have scouts jumping out of their seats, he does throw a tight spiral & can put some mustard on it when he needs to. However, Tajh Boyd’s most impressive asset could be his leadership skills & ability to run his offense. With the offense completely falling on his shoulders in 2013 we could easily see Boyd throw for 4,000 yards & 40 touchdowns. Those kinds of numbers would almost assure him a seat in New York as a Heisman finalist.

3. Johnny “Football” Manziel - Sophomore - Texas A&M

Let’s remove all of the off the field stuff surrounding Manziel for a second, the kid is a flat-out stud & no amount of scrutiny can take that away from him. Unless you live under a rock you know Manziel is the reigning Heisman trophy winner & the first freshman to ever do so, which paints a massive target in his back going into this season. I believe Manziel can handle the pressure & I might be in the minority on that one.

While Manziel doesn’t possess the elite arm-strength of a Stephen a Morris or Teddy Bridgewater, he does have a good arm & is a solid quarterback even without his legs. When you look at his numbers, Johnny Manziel completed 68% of his passes in 2012 throwing for 3,706 with 26 touchdowns to just 9 interceptions but he’s most know for what he does on the grown. I personally believe he’s under rated as a passer & with another year of work I think we’ll see his pocket skills improve.

Look I understand why people are going nuts over this kid but you can’t deny on the field he’s something special, he’s must see TV without a doubt. If Manziel can tighten up his footwork & show that he has the ability to be accurate from the pocket I can see him being a 1st or high 2nd round selection in the 2014 NFL draft, providing he comes out. But let’s put the NFL aside for a second, even with all of the off the field drama Johnny Football is still one of college football’s elite quarterbacks.

2. Teddy Bridgewater - Senior - Louisville

What can I say about Teddy Bridgewater that hasn’t already been said? He’s probably the most polished college football quarterback in the nation, had a rocket for an arm & his accuracy is off the charts. Bridgewater has everything you look for in a quarterback, he’s tough, smart & well-mannered not to mention a stud on the field.

I’m not sure if Bridgewater can improve on his 2012 numbers much as he completed 68.5% of his passes for 3,718 with 27 touchdowns to just 8 interceptions. I guess he could throw for 4,000 yards & 30 touchdowns but even if his numbers dropped he’d still be the best quarterback coming out this year. The biggest question surrounding Teddy is why won’t he take off more, and the answer is simple it’s just not in his game. He uses his athleticism to buy himself more time in the pocket to find the open receiver down the field, something more duel-threat quarterbacks should learn to do.

Bridgewater has it all, the crisp footwork, flawless throwing motion, arm-strength, accuracy & leadership not to mention the things you can’t teach a football player such as leadership skills. There is no doubt in my mind that Teddy is ready for the next level, his thirst for a national championship brought him back to Louisville for a senior season & I’m excited to see if he can accomplish that goal.

1. Marcus Mariota - Sophomore - Oregon

Anyone that follows my writing probably saw this coming, I’ve gone in record many times stating that Marcus Mariota is the best quarterback in college football. Look I get that Teddy Bridgewater is the most polished signal caller in the nation but the combination of what Mariota brings to the table cannot be overlooked. I believe he’s the best duel-threat quarterback in the nation & if you took away his legs he’d still be elite.

Mariota is a 6’4 211 pound stud of a football player; he has the elite arm-strength you look for in a quarterback, the pin-point accuracy & the soft touch when necessary. Mariota completed 68.5% of his passes in 2012 throwing for 2,677 yards with 32 touchdowns to 6 interceptions while adding 752 yards on the ground. He truly makes it look easy when he takes off, he’s a gazelle in the open field making defensive backs look like their standing in quicksand & he without a doubt has one of the strongest arms in the country.

When watching Mariota play you see a complete quarterback, a kid who understands route timing as well as his progressions & what separates him from other duel-threat signal callers is his ability to understand when to tuck the ball and run. When you consider Oregon’s rushing attack was focused around De ‘Anthony Thomas & Kenjon Barner, Mariota’s rushing totals start to look even better I fully expect those numbers to go up in 2013. I truly feel he’s college football’s best quarterback & should find himself a seat in New York as a Heisman finalist.

Director of Content for NCAA Football/Broadcaster

Follow Corey Carmona on Twitter @SportsJunkyy


Twitter: @FullScaleSport

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