6. QB Ian Book, Jr. Notre Dame
Brandon Wimbush was fine.
He was able to lead the Irish to a 3-0 star, but the offense sputtered against Ball State, and it stalled too much against Vanderbilt. Against the Commodores, Ian Book stepped in, hit all three of his passes with a touchdown in the 22-17 victory, and the gig was his the rest of the way.
The magic was there two years ago, too, leading the Irish to an improbable 21-17 comeback win over LSU in the Citrus Bowl by completing 14-of-19 passes for 164 yards and two touchdowns.
But this season he took the Irish to the College Football Playoff.
The running of Dexter Williams had a lot to do with that, but Book was the difference-maker, hitting over 70% of his throws for, 2,468 yards and 19 touchdowns while spreading out six picks.
He was no Wimbush running the ball, but when needed, he took off for a few key runs including a late score in the tight game against Northwestern.
The problem? He’ll need a few new receivers to emerge, but the bigger concern could be a trip to Georgia on September 21st in what might be the team’s make-or-break moment.
That should be his big game for the Heisman hunt, too.