Who Is The Best Mountain West Quarterback?
Last year was the year of the running back; this is the year of the quarterback.
Who would you take to lead your team at quarterback
The 2017 Mountain West season is transitioning from the year of the running back from and now it is the year of the quarterback. It has taken a few years to get back to this point. The last time the conference was this loaded at quarterback was when Derek Carr, David Fales and Chuckie Keeton were under center.
All six starting quarterbacks return from the Mountain Division, four returning starters are back from the West Division and the other two in the West come with enormous hype with UNLV’s redshirt freshman Armani Rogers and Alabama transfer David Cornwell at Nevada.
Look for these to be revisited each and every week through the season.
12. Josh Love, San Jose State
Love is a returning starter for the Spartans and technically he is listed as co-starter with redshirt freshman Montel Aaron for the season-opener against South Florida. Honestly there is not a ton to like about the Spartans passing attack but a lot of that has to do with 50 sacks allowed last year and also that Love had two touchdowns to just five interceptions last year.
11. Chason Virgil, Fresno State
People either love or hate Chason Virgil as the Bulldogs starting quarterback. He threw for 202 yards per game last year in front of a bad offensive line but his production is somewhat aided by the fact that the Bulldogs have one of the better receiving corps in the country, and throwing a lot in attempts to come from behind. Virgil only completed 51 percent of his passes to go along with 13 touchdowns and 10 interceptions. There could be a point he is displaced by Oregon State transfer Marcus McMaryion.
10. Armani Rogers, UNLV
The former Cal and three-star recruit is getting unprecedented praise for a player who has yet to take an FBS snap. Maybe Rogers is going to be the next great college football quarterback, but lets see what he can do. The coaches and players love him in camp so far, and it helps that he has a strong offensive line, a great running back duo and one of the best wide receivers in the league in Devonte Boyd.
9. David Cornwell, Nevada
The former Alabama transfer has not played a complete game since he was in high school in 2012 and never threw a pass while playing for the Crimson Tide. He fits the quarterback mold of what head coach Jay Norvell and offensive coordinator Matt Mumme want. This ranking is similar to Rogers because they have not played.
8. Christian Chapman, San Diego State
The Aztecs have not had to rely on the passing game the past few years and have needed a quarterback to not turn the ball over, hand the ball off and make a decent amount of throws. Word form San Diego is that Chapman is hoping for a breakout season and the coaches like who they have at wide receivers. In his first year as a starter, Chapman put up decent numbers by passing for 1,994 yards while completing 61 percent of his passes, 20 touchdowns to only six interceptions.
7. Kent Myers, Utah State
Kent Myers has the talent to be even higher on this list since he has the experience after being thrusted into action as a true freshman and because he is a dual-threat quarterback. The new Utah State offense want to throw the ball a lot and that will help Myers, but losing Rayshard Lewis is a big deal and that means Ron’Quavion Tarver will need to step up. The running game was bad last year and if that can be shored up then it will only help Myers and the offense.
6. Lamar Jordan, New Mexico
This is where things get tricky in the Mountain West as Jordan is one of two quarterbacks who guide a run-option attack. Jordan has been doing it for years with the Lobos and with great success moving the ball. The plan this year is for him to throw the ball more and if he is successful then he could move up this list. He just need to improve upon that 53 percent completion percentage and do better than 17 touchdowns and 17 interceptions.
5. Arion Worthman, Air Force
Worthman stepped in last year for the Falcons full time for the final six games and the offense immediately took a step forward with his athleticism. He led the Falcons to a 6-0 record as a starter and that included a win over Boise State, Colorado State and a bowl win over South Alabama. He rushed for 674 yards and threw for another 546 to go along with 10 total touchdowns.
4. Dru Brown, Hawaii
Brown took over as the full time starter after just a few weeks and ended up with a 6-4 record and led the Warriors to wins on the mainland against Air Force and also a come from behind bowl victory over Middle Tennessee State. That was the Warriors first bowl victory in a decade. He had an impressive 23 touchdowns to just seven interceptions in his rookie campaign.
3. Nick Stevens, Colorado State
Stevens was fifth in the nation last year in quarterback rating and was the best in the country in November. This is all after he had a disastrous start to the season where he was benched but turned it around. He threw only three interceptions once he became the starter once again and two of those came in the bowl loss to Idaho. There is talent around him in wide receiver Michael Gallup and running backs Dalyn Dawkins and Izzy Matthews which will help the offense even more.
2. Josh Allen, Wyoming
The hype is beyond unreal for Allen. He is projected to be the No. 1 pick in the the 2018 NFL Draft. Allen has a lot of talent but he only completed 55 percent of his passes and force a lot of stuff. The offseason may have cured some of that and if Allen makes better choices he could put up amazing numbers. Allen also is can extend plays with his legs and that just adds to another layer of his talents.
1. Brett Rypien, Boise State
Numbers do not lie and Rypien tore up the Mountain West by throwing for the most yards with 3,646 and was second in touchdowns — behind Josh Allen’s 28 — with 24 to just eight interceptions. Rypien is also accurate and completed 62 percent of his passes last year, plus he was second in the league with 9.3 yards per completion.