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Monday, April 13, 2009
Big Ten returns top six quarterbacks in 2009


Posted by ESPN.com's Adam Rittenberg

Check out the Big Ten's spring prospectus, if you haven't already. One item that stood out to me is the fact that the Big Ten returns its six-most efficient quarterbacks from 2008.

Is this a good thing?

The easy answer is yes. Who doesn't want an experienced and efficient quarterback taking snaps for another year?

On the flip side, as stated countless times in this blog, quarterback play is the biggest factor separating the Big Ten from rejoining college football's elite.

Last year was downright miserable for Big Ten quarterbacks, as all-conference candidates like Purdue's Curtis Painter, Ohio State's Todd Boeckman and Indiana's Kellen Lewis really struggled. Northwestern's C.J. Bacher was average, at best, and both Iowa and Wisconsin replaced their opening-day starters.

So as you look at this list, keep in mind that at least five of the six players (Penn State's Daryll Clark is the exception) need to improve on last year's numbers to truly elevate quarterback play around the league.

The Big Ten's Returning Quarterbacks (2008 Statistics)
Quarterback, School Rating Pass yards TD INT
Terrelle Pryor, Ohio State 146.5 1,311 12 4
Daryll Clark, Penn State 143.4 2,592 19 6
Juice Williams, Illinois 138.1 3,173 22 16
Ricky Stanzi, Iowa 134.8 1,956 14 9
Adam Weber, Minnesota 126.9 2,761 15 8
Dustin Sherer, Wisconsin 120.7 1,389 6 5