Posts Tagged 'Tim Tebow'

Where can Terrelle Pryor get the most playing time?

If you haven’t seen highlights of Terrelle Pryor playing football, just search YouTube. I have, and let me tell you the hype seems to be accurate. Pryor doesn’t seem to have the same level of fanfare as last year’s Rivals #1, Jimmy Clausen. Clausen was the youngest of a trio of solid QB brothers (joining Rick and Casey). Some say he is destined to become better. I don’t remember enough about ’06 #1 Percy Harvin’s decision or much about ’05 #1 Derrick Williams decisions. Looking back at those two, Williams had an amazing freshman year but has been lackluster since. Harvin seemed to breakout this year as sophomore and could be a Heisman contender this year. Clausen was hurt and had a horrible O-Line so we don’t know what his deal will be. But back to Pryor.

The Vince Young comparisons seem fair. Pryor was a lot bigger than I expected to be and seemed like a much better passer than you would expect an 18-year old who is that big to be. The consensus seems to be he is more “polished” at this age than Young was, but as Brian from mgoblog eloquently put it, Young improved about 1,000x at Texas. One thing about Young that a lot of people take for granted, is that he redshirted his first year (how often does the #1 recruit do that?), then only started 7 games as a redshirt Freshman. Even then it wasn’t until the end of his 3rd year that he really broke out (see the Michigan Rose Bowl as what I consider his breakout game). The rest is history.

Pryor’s situation will likely be different. If he goes to Michigan he will start from day 1. He will take his lumps and learn on the job. The college game is obviously different, but this doesn’t often work in the pros. The thing is, Michigan will be learning a new offense and have nothing to lose. If he goes to Ohio St. he won’t start in ’08 because Todd Boeckman will be using his experience to lead a MNC contender. In all likelihood Pryor would own the job in ’09 after a year as backup (Antonio Henton is his best competition and it’s not a lot). We have heard Florida, LSU, Oregon and Penn St. are still in the mix.

Obviously Florida means he has at least one year to wait behind Tim Tebow. My gut says Tebow comes back in ’09.  Even so, they recruited two solid guys in ’07, Cameron Newton and John Brantley. Newton will be a sophomore in ’08, Brantley a redshirt freshman. Meaning unlike UM and OSU, if he goes to Florida he will have some serious competition in ’09, even if Tebow leaves.

At LSU, he would spend at least one year behind Ryan Perrilloux who has bided his time and earned his chance. He has two years of eligibility left but might be cocky enough to test the pros next year. If he’s smart he stays through ’09. LSU has picked up 4-star QBs in both ’07 and ’08 so there would be some competition here, but Pryor still would be the front-runner as soon as Perrilloux left. Although it’s worth nothing that Perrilloux doesn’t own the job as tightly as Boeckman or Tebow so I guess Pryor could work his way in somehow.

Oregon has redshirt sophomore Jason Roper has the likely QB in ’08. He’s nothing to get crazy about, and they do have a solid 4-star dual threat, Darron Thomas, coming in this year. He is likely the future without Pryor. Pryor wouldn’t be handed the job here but could probably come in and win it, if nothing else by midseason. The downside to Oregon is that they don’t have the same level of talent Michigan does, and they play in a tougher conference.

Penn St. will have a new starter at QB in ’08, likely redshirt junior Daryll Clark is the guy. Redshirt sophomore Pat Devlin is the only other likely option. Pryor would have a shot in ’08, but would have a very solid chance in ’09 to be the starter.

So realistically LSU and Florida seem out due to lack of playing time. Oregon is a longshot because of the talent level and distance. So it’s really the three Big Ten schools.

Dixon is out, is Tebow the man now?

Dennis Dixon is out for the year. It ended Oregon’s big season and Dixon’s incredible run. The injury will likely impact his draft stock but that’s not the topic at hand. The topic is the Heisman trophy, where many considered Dixon the front runner. With Dixon out the race seems somewhat open. Mr. Dan Shanoff has been hyping his boy Tim Tebow for weeks now. But the question is, does he really have a shot?

Tebow is a sick player. In his limited play last season it became obvious that he was either going to be a huge disappointment when playing full time or he would be a star.  Any guesses on where he is at? I would say there is little question he is the best player in college football right now, the bigger issue is, he’s a sophomore.

No sophomore has won the award in the history of the trophy. Many have come close…just last year sophomore RB Darren McFadden was passed over for senior QB Troy Smith. In 2004 freshman RB Adrian Peterson was passed over for junior QB Matt Leinart. In 2003 it was junior QB Jason White over sophomore WR Larry Fitgerald. In 2001 senior QB edged sophomore QB Rex Grossman.  I am not saying that all of those sophomores (and one freshman) deserved to win, my point is simply that they didn’t.

Can Tebow be the first? Maybe, but I wouldn’t bet on it. My impression is that a majority of the Heisman voters are “traditionalists” and will continue the trend at hand. Plus it’s my belief that voters reward players for their entire career (even though that isn’t how the award is designed) and that should play a factor in again this season. Darren McFadden should have won in many people’s eyes last year and might make up for it this year. The guy is 4th in the NCAA in rushing and a ridiculous player. I don’t think Mike Hart will win, but he is going to earn a lot of votes for 4 solid years of playing.

If I had a vote, right now I would be using it on Tebow, but I don’t. And if I could bet on the winner this weekend, it would be McFadden. But talk to me again in 2008.