Top 5 Big 10 Quarterbacks For 2013
Overview of Big Ten Quarterbacks
The 2012 season for quarterback play in the Big 10 was one of the strangest in recent memory. The leading passer was a former walk on at a depleted Penn State program in Matt McGloin. Many teams had quarterback problems and were running a two-quarterback system at one point or another like Northwestern, Michigan State, Illinois and Purdue.
This year looks to be a better season for quarterback play as many guys will step in with a couple years of experience. Players like Braxton Miller and Devin Gardner look to headline the conference at the quarterback position and both looked primed to have breakout statistical years, especially Miller, who is a Heisman candidate.
Some of the middle of the pack quarterbacks like Taylor Martinez, Kain Colter and Nathan Scheelhaase are all dual-threat guys with a couple years of starting experience under their belt and are all heading into their senior seasons, looking to make a final impact on their schools.
Other questions around the conference are how will the shaky quarterback play at schools like Indiana or Michigan State play out? Can Andrew Maxwell finally live up to the great praise coaches given him or will he be beat out by backup Connor Cook? Who will win the position battle in Wisconsin between Danny O’Brien, Curt Phillips or Joel Stave?
Schools like Iowa, Minnesota, Penn State and Purdue, will all be breaking in new quarterbacks. So it will be interesting to see how those programs can adjust to the good defensive play of Big 10 football.
5. Tre Roberson, Indiana Hoosiers
To those outside of Bloomington, Tre Roberson may be relatively unknown. But he is someone to keep an eye on. Last season, he was the starting quarterback but broke his leg and missed most of the season. As a freshman, while he wasn’t great, he showed good flashes of greatness. All reports out of Indiana say his leg is fine and he is poised to make a name for himself this upcoming season.
4. Kain Colter, Northwestern Wildcats
Not one offensive player has put up more production recently than Kain Colter. Not only is a dual-threat quarterback with a strong arm, he plays receiver and runningback, sometimes all in the same game. You never really know where Colter will be, but when he’s playing quarterback, he has been extremely effective. Entering his senior season, he looks poised to finally break the bad luck of Northwestern football.
3. Taylor Martinez, Nebraska Cornhuskers
Say what you want about Taylor Martinez, he is still one of the most dynamic athletes in the Big 10; just watch his play from the Big 10 Championship Game. Martinez has spent countless hours working on improving his throwing motion, and he already has killer speed to go with it. This could be the year he finally puts it all together and gets Nebraska back to prominence.
2. Devin Gardner, Michigan Wolverines
To this day, I still can’t find a reason why Devin Gardner wasn’t starting over Denard Robinson from the start last season. Gardner has the size and arm strength of an NFL quarterback, and he reminds me of Vince Young in college. The offense is in his hands now and he has dominant left tackle Taylor Lewan protecting him. Look for Gardner to have a breakout season and impress the NFL scouts.
1. Braxton Miller, Ohio State Buckeyes
Braxton Miller might be the most exciting player in the conference this upcoming season. A deadly dual-threat quarterback, Urban Meyer’s offense is the perfect system for Miller to dominate in. Last year, he led them to a perfect 12-0 record, and now he’ll have had a full year to get Meyer’s system down. Adding in the top-level recruits that the Buckeyes are surrounding Miller with, the rest of the conference needs to watch out.