Here’s who we have lining up under center for college football’s top programs in 2018.
Is your favorite college football team going to have a quarterback change in 2018?
Who’s going to win the job next season?
Here are our early projections for the starting QBs of several major programs.
Alabama – Jalen Hurts
Tua Tagovailoa got some playing time this season, but this job is squarely on Hurts’ shoulders.
Clemson – Kelly Bryant
The Tigers are loaded with highly-touted recruits at the QB position and will bring in another five-star QB in 2018.
Bryant has locked this job up for another season, though.
The Gators have a new coach in Dan Mullen who specializes in the QB position. Will he make a big change under center? We’ll go with Feleipe Franks holding onto the job in 2018.
There was talk about James Blackman supplanting Deondre Francois as Florida State’s starting QB in 2018 during ESPN’s broadcast of the Seminoles’ bowl game today. We don’t see that happening, though. Francois will return to full health and have the job.
Jake Fromm took the job from Jacob Eason after the former 5-star recruit went down with an injury. Will Eason win the job back this offseason? We’ll say that Fromm holds onto it and that Eason transfers somewhere else (Miami?).
Patterson is the biggest transfer acquisition of the college football offseason. His eligibility hasn’t been squared away yet, but it’s expected to be approved by the NCAA. He’ll beat out Brandon Peters and Dylan McCaffrey and win the job.
Tanner Lee was really hyped up before the 2017 season and there was some NFL Draft discussion. He failed to live up to the hype, but there’s still some NFL talk? We think the arrival of Scott Frost will persuade him to stay for one more season and he’ll win the job.
This should be the most-interesting QB battle in 2018. J.T. Barrett will be gone, so the position will be decided between Dwayne Haskins, Joe Burrow and Tate Martell. All could be worthy of the job. Haskins, though, looked great in backup duty this past season. He’ll win the job again.
Replacing a Heisman Trophy winner is never easy. Who will earn the nod at Oklahoma in 2018? Kyler Murray, the former Texas A&M QB, was the Sooners’ backup in 2017. He looked pretty good in the role and he’s our pick for OU’s starter in 2018.
Will Sam Ehlinger, Texas’ starter at the end of the 2017 season, hold onto the job over Shane Buechele? We think so. He’s our pick for the man to lead the Longhorns in 2018.
Darnold, if he decides to leave, will be a top 10 pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, and maybe even the No. 1 overall guy. But he struggled a decent amount in 2017 and many, including ESPN’s Todd McShay, think it’d be beneficial for him to return. He’s just a redshirt sophomore, so coming back for one more season isn’t crazy. We think that’s what he’ll end up doing.