Where have all the QB’s gone?

The final BCS standings in 2004 showed incredible talent and experience at QB among the top 10 teams.

USC – Leinart (Junior, 2nd year at starter, tied for NC previous year)
OU – White (Senior plus, 8 year starter, reigning Heisman winner)
Auburn – Campbell (Senior, 3rd year starting, 1st round pick)
Texas – Young (Sophomore, 7 starts as freshman)
Cal – Rogers (Junior, returning starter, 1st round pick)
Utah – Smith (Junior, returning starter, 1st pick overall)
Georgia – Green (Senior, 4 year starter, All-time NCAA wins leader, 3rd round)
VPI – Randall (Senior, multi year starter, ACC player of the year)
Boise State – I can’t spell his name, but you know who he is.
Louisville – Lefors (Senior, returning starter and C-USA player of the year, 4th round)

In 2004, the good teams had strong defenses to go with experienced QB’s. USC, OU, Auburn, Texas, Cal, and Georgia all had great defenses, and Utah, Boise State, and Louisville played in pathetic conferences so they didn’t need them.

In 2005, no team seems to be able to match experience at QB with strong defensive play. Until USC’s defense gets it going, the one exception appears to be Texas.

Texas – Young (Junior, 3rd year as starter, improved as a passer)
USC – Leinart (Senior, 3rd year starter, poise, experience, leadership)
Va Tech – Vick (Junior, 1st year on parole, unrivalled talent)
Georgia – Shockley (Senior, 1st year starter, athletic and talented)
Bama – Croyle (Senior, frequently injured starter, outstanding when healthy)
UCLA – Olsen (Senior, sometime starter, injury problems)
Miami – Wright (Soph., 1st year starter, talented but inexperienced)
LSU – Russell (Soph., sometime starter, talented but inconsistent)
Penn St. – Robinson (Senior, position player, great athlete)
FSU – Weatherford (Freshman, redshirt, good potential)

Nine of the top ten BCS teams in 2004 had at least a junior who was a returning starter at QB. The one exception was Vince Young. This year, the initial BCS top ten has only two QB’s who were fulltime starters in 2004.