Almost all of the Big East teams are getting their starting quarterbacks from 2010 back for this season. In terms of the Positive Impact Factor (what's this?), the league landed in about the middle of the pack in the FBS in 2010. We at BECB are thinking (and hoping) that we see improved quarterback play in the Big East this season. Before getting to what the returning quarterbacks have to offer, I wanted to look back at the top five and worst five performances from Big East quarterbacks in 2010 (minimum 10 touches).
|QB||Team||Opponent||Touches||Total TD||Neg Play||XNeg Play||XPos Play||PIF|
|B.J. Daniels||South Florida||Cincinnati||25||4||12||0||16||104|
|Zach Collaros||Cincinnati||Miami (Ohio)||18||3||16.7||0||16.7||100|
|Geno Smith||West Virginia||UNLV||21||3||23.8||23.8||14.3||90.5|
In the five games above, each quarterback turned in their best performance of the season and each game was also good enough to be top five in the Big East. B.J. Daniels' game against Cincinnati ranked as the 12th best game in the FBS last season. Navy's Ricky Dobbs put up a 118.2 against Notre Dame in the highest ranked game. Daniels completed 81.3% of his passes and produced four touchdowns (he produced a touchdown on 16% of his touches in the game) in leading the Bulls to a 38-30 win. Zach Collaros had no trouble against the Redhawks in a 45-3 win in which he threw three touchdowns and only had three incompletions. Louisville and Houston were the only teams to have multiple quarterbacks produce perfect PIF games. They both played Memphis which gave up three perfect PIF games on the 2010 season. There was no stopping Adam Froman and Justin Burke in their games against Memphis and Rutgers, respectively. It should come as no surprise that those two games provided Louisville's biggest wins in terms of point differential. Likewise, Geno Smith's excellent game against UNLV allowed the Mountaineers to eclipse the 40 point plateau for the first (and ultimately last) time in 2010.
|QB||Team||Opponent||Touches||Total TD||Neg Play||X Neg Play||X Pos Play||PIF|
Syracuse's Ryan Nassib made the list three times. Before Syracuse fans send in their hate mail, let me explain. Nassib has what you might call a fumbling problem. On a full 14% of his career carries (which includes sacks), he fumbles the ball. In each of these three games above, Nassib lost a fumble and didn't carry the ball much which is why he got such a stiff penalty. The Orange easily won two of the three games. However, in those three games, Delone Carter, Antwon Bailey and Prince-Tyson Gulley accumulated 27.4% of the total rushing yards and 50% of the rushing touchdowns for the entire season. So while the three games above dragged down Nassib's average, he still finished above Greg Paulus' 2009 season by a point. The only reason their seasons were close is that Paulus completed almost 68% of his passes (Paulus was so accurate that when his interceptions are added in, he completed virtually 83% of his throws to somebody on the field). In the case of Tom Savage, the FIU game was actually a disaster for both starting quarterbacks. The game-winning score was a 24 yard rush by wide receiver Mohamed Sanu, who also threw for Rutgers' only passing touchdown of the game. Lastly, Cody Endres had the worst game unofficially last season (I haven't tracked every 2010 game in detail yet) with a -125 against Buffalo. While the Huskies went on to win the game, Endres' lost fumble allowed Buffalo to climb back into the game momentarily. After the turnover, it took Buffalo just three plays to cut the Connecticut lead down to 24-21. Fortunately for the Huskies, Buffalo's quarterbacks couldn't get out of their own way and kept producing turnovers of their own.
I don't want to end this on a negative note as I already said we expect things to improve for quarterbacks in the Big East in 2011. A good number of quarterbacks I've tracked with the PIF stay pretty much within a certain range for their entire career. For the returning quarterbacks in the Big East, I don't think that is going to be the case. I see the potential for B.J. Daniels and Zach Collaros to return to the form they showed in 2009. Other guys could see big improvements in their rating by limiting some mistakes. In addition, one quarterback was already playing well enough last season that his team should have won the Big East (but didn't). You'll have to wait until the next post to see who that was. Or, go ahead and guess in the comment section.