pcloudyn.png
Wednesday August 21st, 2019 10:56PM

Veteran quarterbacks abound in SEC, led by Tagovailoa, Fromm

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — It is the year of the veteran quarterback in the Southeastern Conference.

Tua Tagovailoa and Jake Fromm are the headliners, but the league is loaded with experienced passers with double-digit starts under their belts at their current school or elsewhere.

The SEC has eight returning starters at quarterback and could have as many as five graduate transfers leading offenses. The teams are hoping that's a recipe for success in a league that hasn't produced a first-round pick at quarterback since Johnny Manziel in 2014.

"I think it's unique that you would have five graduate transfer quarterbacks possibly starting in our conference, and it's also a really good year for the quarterback in the SEC," said Kirby Smart, Fromm's coach at Georgia. "It seems in my experience having been in the SEC for a lot of years, whether as a coach or a player, I don't know that there's been a year where there's been so many quarterbacks that have the experience they have.

"Some of them may not have the experience at that university, but they have experience. That's usually not a good sign for defensive coordinators in our conference. ... It makes it really tough because that position determines a lot of the outcomes of games. That's your leader and the guy that touches the ball every play."

There's little true star power beyond Fromm and Alabama's Tagovailoa , the Heisman Trophy runner-up last season. Either or both could snap that first-round QB drought for a league that routinely sends a bounty of talent into the NFL at other positions. Both are also surrounded by talented playmakers and blockers.

Florida's Feleipe Franks, LSU's Joe Burrow and Kentucky's Terry Wilson all are also back after helping lead their teams to 10-win seasons.

South Carolina's Jake Bentley has started 32 games over the past three seasons. Texas A&M's Kellen Mond (20 starts) and Tennessee's Jarrett Guarantano (18) have started in multiple seasons as well.

"I think it's great for the league," Fromm said. "You get great competition week in and week out, and that's what everybody wants. That's what everybody wants to see. We're excited about it."

Even most of the teams with new starters have seasoned vets, though Auburn and Mississippi will be starting freshmen.

The biggest name among the new guys is Missouri's Kelly Bryant , who led Clemson to the national championship game two seasons ago. Bryant started 18 games but left after losing the starting job to talented freshman Trevor Lawrence.

His presence greatly eases the worries about replacing four-year starter Drew Lock. Even South Carolina coach Will Muschamp, who faced Bryant at Clemson, predicts "a very smooth transition." Muschamp praised Bryant's accuracy and mobility.

"But I probably think his best attributes as a player is his intangible qualities," the Gamecocks coach said. "The guy is an outstanding leader. He positively affects people around him. He gets guys going and believing in what you need to do to be successful."

At Arkansas, graduate transfer Ben Hicks was a three-year starter at SMU while Nick Starkel is a former Texas A&M starter.

Vanderbilt has Riley Neal, who passed for 7,393 yards and 46 touchdowns over three seasons at Ball State.

Mississippi State grad transfer Tommy Stevens spent two seasons under coach Joe Moorhead at Penn State. He's battling Keytaon Thompson for the starting job.

LSU's Burrow started last year as a grad transfer from Ohio State. He finished a solid debut season with 394 passing yards and four touchdowns in a Fiesta Bowl win over Central Florida.

He's the first LSU quarterback to pass for 2,500-plus yards and rush for at least 350 in the same season. LSU coach Ed Orgeron expects to free him up for more runs this season.

"He reminds me of Bobby Hebert, a quarterback that I played with who was a tremendous football player that had all of the intangibles of a leader," Orgeron said. "Joe's very tough. Joe's going to lead by example. His team believes in him. We expect him to have a great year."

___

More AP college football: https://apnews.com/Collegefootball and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25

  • Associated Categories: Associated Press (AP), AP Sports, AP Online Football, College Sports, AP Online - Georgia News, AP Sports - College Football
© Copyright 2019 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
2007 mass shooting survivor copes with 300 pellets of lead
Utah woman talks about struggling with grief after surviving mass shooting and losing her teenage daughter
2:53PM ( 8 minutes ago )
Veteran quarterbacks abound in SEC, led by Tagovailoa, Fromm
Veteran quarterbacks abound in SEC, led by Tagovailoa, Fromm
2:38PM ( 23 minutes ago )
Immigration: Nearly half of those arrested in raid released
A spokesman for the Immigration and Customs Enforcement says nearly half of those arrested during the largest immigration raid in a decade in the United States have been released
2:33PM ( 28 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Browns trade RB Duke Johnson to Texans for 2020 draft pick
Browns trade disgruntled running back Duke Johnson to Texans for 2020 draft pick
11:42AM ( 3 hours ago )
White Sox, Yankees to play at 'Field of Dreams' in 2020
White Sox, Yankees to play at 'Field of Dreams' in 2020 in 1st major league game ever played in Iowa
11:40AM ( 3 hours ago )
Beer chaser: Mayfield endorses sports drink after brew chug
Browns QB Mayfield signs endorsement deal with sports drink after beer chug
10:45AM ( 4 hours ago )
AP Sports
Dolphins' receiver, owner at odds on support of Trump
Dolphins owner Ross defends his support of longtime friend Donald Trump after being criticized about it by one of his players
8:22PM ( 18 hours ago )
Fromm, Georgia adjusting to huge turnover at wide receiver
Simmons, Georgia receivers eager to prove they won't be the weak spot on offense that is set at other spots
3:33PM ( 23 hours ago )
NFL Pro Bowl returns to Orlando for 4th straight year
NFL Pro Bowl to return to Orlando for 4th straight year and be held on Jan. 26, one week before Super Bowl
1:12PM ( 1 day ago )
AP Online Football
Ga Tech football team takes in different kind of football
Georgia Tech's football team took in a different kind of football, attending a Major League Soccer game between Atlanta United and LA Galaxy at Mercedes-Benz Stadium
9:50PM ( 4 days ago )
Saban denies offering ex-Ohio State assistant Zach Smith job
Alabama coach Nick Saban says he never offered ex-Ohio State assistant Zach Smith a job
2:17PM ( 5 days ago )
Meyer texts: Alabama offered Zach Smith job after '17 season
Former Ohio State coach Urban Meyer encouraged Zach Smith to stay with the Buckeyes in January 2018 after the then-assistant coach was pursued by Alabama, according to texts messages from Meyer to Smith
7:05PM ( 5 days ago )
College Sports
After deadly wrecks, Atlanta bans electric scooters at night
Atlanta is banning electric scooters during the nighttime hours during a deadly summer for riders
1:44PM ( 1 hour ago )
Dozens released after massive Mississippi immigration raids
Busloads of immigrant workers have been released a day after being detained in the largest immigration raid in a decade in the United States
12:24PM ( 2 hours ago )
Busloads released after Mississippi immigration raids
Busloads of immigrant workers have been released a day after being detained in the largest immigration raid in a decade in the United States
12:14PM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Online - Georgia News
Ga Tech embraces new era, but reality right around corner
Geoff Collins has enjoyed an extended honeymoon period as Georgia Tech's new coach, but reality is right around the corner
6:38PM ( 1 week ago )
AP Top 25 Podcast: Uncertain East, wide-open West in Big Ten
There is much uncertainty among the Big Ten East superpowers heading into this season
4:05PM ( 1 week ago )
Florida opens fall camp amid highest expectations in decade
Dan Mullen opened his second season at Florida amid the program's highest expectations in nearly a decade
5:37PM ( 1 week ago )
AP Sports - College Football
2007 mass shooting survivor copes with 300 pellets of lead
Utah woman talks about struggling with grief after surviving mass shooting and losing her teenage daughter
2:53PM ( 8 minutes ago )
Immigration: Nearly half of those arrested in raid released
A spokesman for the Immigration and Customs Enforcement says nearly half of those arrested during the largest immigration raid in a decade in the United States have been released
2:33PM ( 28 minutes ago )
Mayors urge Senate to return to Washington for gun bill vote
More than 200 mayors, including those where mass shootings occurred, are urging Senate leaders to return to Washington to act on bipartisan gun safety legislation
2:29PM ( 33 minutes ago )
Wife of US student held in Iran says husband 'not a spy'
Wife of Princeton grad student imprisoned in Iran appeals for international cooperation to get him released
2:28PM ( 33 minutes ago )
No phone calls, no groceries: Kashmir on edge under lockdown
The lives of millions in the Indian-controlled portion of Kashmir have been upended since New Delhi imposed an unprecedented security lockdown and a near-total communications blackout
2:27PM ( 34 minutes ago )