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Saturday’s Den: Some college football QB’s who transferred this year……

This is a listing of QB’s who transferred this season; it is NOT a ranking; players are listed alphabetically by their new school’s name.

— Dequan Finn, Baylor- A 3-year starter at Toledo, was MAC Player of the Year LY, throwing for 2,657 yards, 22 TD’s. Also ran for 563 yards, 7 TD’s.

— Maalik Murphy, Duke- A former 5-star recruit, Murphy started twice for Texas LY, but threw only 71 passes all season. Former starter Riley Leonard bolted to Notre Dame.

— DJ Uiagalelei, Florida State- Threw for 2,638 yards and 21 TD’s for Oregon State LY, after starting for two years at Clemson before that. FSU has only 10 starters back, but they added 14 transfers. Uiagalelei needs to be a more accurate passer.

— Cade McNamara, Iowa- Hawkeyes ranked 129th in scoring last year, 127th in passing yardage; fair to say they had the worst offense in the country, but they went 10-4, despite losing their last two games, 26-0/35-0. McNamara was QB for a 12-2 Michigan team in 2021; he had a torn ACL last year. Iowa brought in a new offensive coordinator to try to score some points.

— Tyler Shough, Louisville- Texas Tech transfer threw for 177 yards in Louisville’s spring game; Cardinals coach Brohm is an excellent offensive coach, but Louisville has only two starters back on the offensive line.

— Cam Ward, Miami- Started out at I-AA Incarnate Word, then bolted to Washington State; he threw for 6,963 yards, 48 TD’s in two years at Wazzu. Miami was 1-4 last year in games decided by 7 or fewer points last year. Ward was brought in to reverse that trend.

— Max Johnson, North Carolina- Started 22 games at LSU/Texas A&M; his dad is former NFL QB Brad Johnson, his uncle is Mark Richt, the former Miami coach. Tar Heels started last year 6-0, but then the defense imploded and they finished 8-5.

Famous birthdays, June 1st:
Morgan Freeman, 87
Brian Cox, 78
Tony Bennett, 55
Teri Polo, 55
Paula Malcomson, 54
Alanis Morrissette, 50
Brandi Carlile, 43
Nick Young, 39
Andrew Abbott, 25

— Grayson McCall, NC State- 3-time Sun Belt Player of the Year at Coastal Carolina, where he threw for over 10,000 yards. Wolfpack has September games against Tennessee/Clemson, so McCall better mesh with his new teammates fairly quickly.

— Riley Leonard, Notre Dame- This is what Notre Dame does now, they just poach QB’s; last year it was Wake Forest’s Sam Hartman (they went 10-3), now it is Leonard, who led Duke to 9-4/8-5 records the last two years. Notre Dame added three transfer WR’s, figures to have a more wide-open offense this season,

— Will Howard, Ohio State- Was a 4-year starter at Kansas State (Wildcats were 31-19 during that time); he is more of a run/pass guy than a deep passer, will be interesting to see how he does under Buckeyes’ new OC, former Oregon/UCLA/Eagles coach Chip Kelly.
Ohio State lost to Michigan the last three years; there is heat on the head coach.

— Alex Bowman, Oklahoma State- Is going into his 7th college season (even I got out of college faster than that); he threw for 3,460 yards LY, with only 15 TD’s, 14 INT’s (RB Gordon ran for 21 TD’s). Cowboys’ entire offensive line returns, so their offense should be stellar.

— Dillon Gabriel, Oregon- Started for two years at UCF, two more years at Oklahoma, now plays for an Oregon team that scored 44.2 points/game LY, with Bo Nix at QB.
Ducks are in the Big 18 now (there are 18 freakin’ teams in this league); November visits to Michigan, Wisconsin will test Gabriel’s skill in cold weather.

— EJ Warner, Rice- Son of Hall of Fame QB Kurt Warner, EJ threw for 3,076 yards last year for a 3-9 Temple squad; he is still an Owl, but a Rice Owl now. Warner led the AAC in passing yards the last two years; he figures to help Rice improve on last year’s minus-14 turnover ratio.
Rice went bowling the last two years, which hasn’t happened a lot for them; they’ve got an experienced team, actually have some expectations this year.

— Will Rogers, Washington- Rogers started for four years at Mississippi State, where he played for the late Mike Leach, but things imploded in Starkville LY, after Leach’s untimely death. He ranks #2 in passing yards in the history of the SEC.
Huskies lost all 11 starters on offense after their head coach bolted to Alabama; they’ve got only one starter back on defense, but new coach Jedd Fisch rebuilt Arizona’s program fairly quickly
This is what college sports are becoming; the rich poaching from the not-so-rich. Not an ideal situation, but it is what it is……..
 

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Thursday’s Den: Random college football knowledge

— Replacing Nick Saban at Alabama is going to be really difficult; the fanbase is spoiled, the SEC is a really tough league. Very little chance this ends well.
Remember Gene Bartow coaching basketball at UCLA? The guy replaced John Wooden, he went 52-9 in two years, then beat feet to start the program at UAB, because back then, 52-9 at UCLA wasn’t good enough. Kind of like Alabama now.
Kalen DeBoer went 25-3 in two years at Washington, 12-6 in two years at Fresno State and before that, he was 67-3 at an NAIA school. Very good coach.
But Alabama has only 8 of 22 starters back from last year; good luck.

— Georgia scored 40.1 ppg last year; they’ve got nine starters back on offense, but lost four assistant coaches, two of whom became head coaches (Georgia State/Syracuse).
Last time Georgia didn’t play in a bowl: 1996.

— USC is in the Big 18 now; they got a break with their schedule- their three eastern road trips are in September/October. Trojans’ over/under win total is only 7.5, not very high; they’ve got only nine starters back. Who will play QB; last year’s backup, Miller Moss or UNLV transfer Jayden Maiava?

— Oklahoma/Texas are both in the SEC now; Sooners figure to struggle some.
Oklahoma has a new:
Offensive coordinator
Quarterback
5 new offensive linemen
Sooners open with four straight home games, but Houston/Tennessee are two of those.

— As for Texas, they’ve got 5 starters back on offense, 7 on defense; their QB is back, and so are 4 of their starters on the offensive line, which is good. They’ve got a tough road game September 7 at Michigan.
Last year, Longhorns were #70 in country in 3rd down conversions (38.4%), 120th in country in TD %age in the red zone (50.8%). Those numbers need to improve.

Florida’s November schedule is kind of hard:
November 2- vs Georgia
November 9- @ Texas
November 16- LSU
November 23- Ole Miss
November 30- @ Florida State
No bye weeks in there; not ideal.
Coordinators who changed jobs since last year:
Ohio State OC Chip Kelly was head coach at UCLA last year.
Alabama DC Kane Wommack was the head coach at South Alabama last year.
Arkansas OC Bobby Petrino was head coach at Missouri State last year.
UCLA OC Eric Bieniemy was OC for the Commanders last year.
Boise State OC Dirk Koetter comes out of semi-retirement to revive the Broncos’ offense.
Michigan DC Wink Martindale was the Giants’ DC last year.

Famous birthdays for June 6th:
Max Venable, 67
Cam Neely, 59
Paul Giamatti, 57
Mark Ellis, 47
Anthony Rendon, 34
DeAndre Hopkins, 32
Joey Lucchesi, 31
Kenny Pickett, 26

12-team college football playoff starts with two games each December 20-21.
Quarterfinals will have two games each December 31-January 1st.
Semi-finals are January 9-10.
National championship game is January 20th.

— Last year, I-A teams went 113-4 vs I-AA teams; it is stupid that these games are played, it is stealing money from fans to watch non-competitive games. This year, there are 121 of these games. Awesome.
I-A teams that lost to a I-AA team last year:
Buffalo, Nevada, Northern Illinois, Stanford.

Michigan QB Jack Tuttle was the 7th-rated QB in the 2018 freshman class; he is still a Wolverine. Here are some other QB’s who were also in that class:
#1- Trevor Lawrence- Was #1 pick in the 2021 draft
#11- Justin Fields- #11 pick in ‘21 draft just got traded to the Steelers.
#25- Zach Wilson- #2 pick in ’21 draft just moved to the Broncos.
#36- Michael Penix- #8 pick in 2024 draft by Atlanta.
#50- Brock Purdy- #262 pick in ’22 draft starts for the 49ers.
Tuttle isn’t the only QB in his 7th year of college football.
Oklahoma State’s Alan Bowman used to play at Texas Tech.
Utah QB Cam Rising used to play at Texas.

— Clemson won its last five games LY, after starting the season 4-4; six true freshmen started 3+ games last year, and none of them transferred. This year, Tigers play Georgia, Florida State, NC State in their first five games.
Last year was first time in 12 years Clemson didn’t win 10+ games; they’ve only got three starters back on defense, but the offense figures to be improved.

— Coaches on the hot seat, alphabetically by school:
(In reality, every coach who lost his last game is on the hot seat, but still…….)
Arkansas- Sam Pittman- Hired Bobby Petrino to save his offense.
Baylor- Dave Aranda- Bears are 3-10 in last 13 games, with a home loss to Texas State.
BYU- Kalani Sitake- Were 118th in country running ball LY, now they’re in the Big X.
Florida- Billy Napier- He is 11-14 in two years, but has 13 starters back this season.
Pittsburgh- Pat Narduzzi- Pitt was 3-9 LY, then fired the offensive coordinator.

— Top QB’s who transferred this year:
Dillon Gabriel (Oklahoma to Oregon)
Cam Ward (Washington State to Miami)
Riley Leonard (Duke to Notre Dame)
DJ Uiagalelei (Clemson to Oregon State to Florida State)
Cam Howard (Kansas State to Ohio State)

— With all the conference shuffling going on, Oregon State/Washington State got screwed over, left behind to fend for themselves, all of which makes Oregon State-Oregon, Washington-Wazzu must watch TV this fall.
Beavers/Coogs are basically playing a Mountain West schedule for now; Oregon State’s coach bolted to Michigan State, and he’s an OSU alum. Not a good sign for the future.
 

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