Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -
The 2008 College Football season is just around the corner, and it is time to take a look at the nation's top players. Starting with the most important position on the field, here is a list of the top field generals in the FBS ranks for the upcoming season.
BEST OF THE BEST:
Tim Tebow is the reigning Heisman Trophy winner.
Tim Tebow (Florida) - Any discussion of the top quarterbacks in the country has to start with the reigning Heisman Trophy winner. Tebow was outstanding as a sophomore, so can he duplicate those numbers as a junior? With the ability to run and pass with equal proficiency, the answer is an emphatic "YES." It would certainly help Tebow's cause if the Gators had an established running back to aid in his efforts, but without one in 2007, Tebow still had the nation's second-best passer rating (172.5), while completing almost 70 percent of his passes, for 3,121 yards, with 36 TDs and just eight INTs.
Sam Bradford (Oklahoma) - I know he was just a freshman, but can anyone argue that this Sooner was one of the best players in college football last year? Bradford led the nation with his 176.5 passer rating, completing 69.5 percent of his attempts for 3,121 yards, with 36 TDs and a mere eight INTs. The thing is, his numbers could actually improve this year, giving him a very good shot at becoming the second straight sophomore to leave the Big Apple with the Heisman.
Chase Daniel (Missouri) - The Tigers were in the BCS picture the entire 2007 season, and Missouri's savvy signal-caller was the main reason why. He simply put up huge numbers as a junior in Columbia, completing just over 68 percent of his passes, resulting in an astounding 4,306 yards. His 33-11 TD-to-INT ratio wasn't too shabby either. He is a bit on the small side (6-0, 225), but there is nothing small about the way he plays.
Pat White (West Virginia) - He's in the Big East, so that could be one strike against him, but the truth of the matter is that few QBs across the country possess the athletic prowess that this veteran Mountaineer has. White can put six on the board anytime he gets his hands on the ball, whether it be throwing downfield or tucking the ball under and running with it. The best dual-threat in the game, White is coming off a season in which he completed 66.7 percent of his tosses, with 14 TDs and just four picks, while rushing for 1,335 yards and an additional 14 scores. Similar numbers should earn him a trip to New York come Heisman time.
Graham Harrell (Texas Tech) - Yes, he plays in a gadget offense at Texas Tech, but he may just be the best in a long line of efficient QBs in Lubbock over the last few years. Harrell completed 71.8 percent of his passes in 2007, amassing an eye-popping 5,705 yards, with 48 TDs and 14 INTs. The Red Raiders pass the ball on first, second and third downs, so you can expect more inflated numbers from Harrell in his senior campaign.
ON THE VERGE:
Colt McCoy (Texas) - Playing QB in Austin comes with a great deal of pressure, and McCoy handled it for the most part last season. He completed 65 percent of his attempts and threw for just over 3,300 yards, but his TD-to-INT ratio (22-18) will need some improvement to make the move to elite status among college QBs as a junior.
Todd Boeckman (Ohio State) - He may just have the best offensive talent around him this year and that could make this senior Buckeye a very dangerous signal- caller in 2008. Last year, he threw 25 TDs, while completing just over 63 percent of his attempts. Although the ultra-talented Terrelle Pryor is waiting in the wings, Boeckman has the ability to put up big numbers in 2008.
Rudy Carpenter (Arizona State) - He took over for Sam Keller and more than filled the void, completing 62 percent of his passes for 3,202 yards with 25 TDs and just 10 INTs. This season the talent across the board is better in Tempe and that should afford Carpenter the opportunity to shine in 2008.
Cullen Harper (Clemson) - He set numerous passing records at Clemson last year, so expect big things from this Tiger in 2008. Harper completed 65 percent of his passes with 27 TDs and just six picks. The ACC's elite may need to worry about Clemson this season, if the 6-4 senior can put it all together.
Todd Reesing (Kansas) - One of the feel-good stories in college football last year was the Kansas program, which maintained its status in the BCS picture most of the season. Reesing certainly helped the cause, boasting an efficient 148.8 passer rating, completing 62 percent of his passes, for 3,486 yards, with 33 TDs and a mere seven INTs. Look for similar numbers from the junior gunslinger in 2008.
Matt Grothe (South Florida), Juice Williams (Illinois), Mark Sanchez (USC), Nate Davis (Ball State), Curtis Painter (Purdue).