While 2014 was billed the year of the quarterback in the Pac-12, and it definitely lived up to the hype, 2015 isn’t exactly shaping up to be a bust. There is plenty of top-to-bottom quality in the league, which boasts eight quarterbacks who were either full-time starters or had starting experience last season.
Kiper ranked the top five senior quarterback and the top five underclassmen quarterbacks – and Kessler and Goff are both highly regarded by Kiper.
Kessler checks in at No. 2 on the senior list (it’s an Insider post, so you need a super cool password to access the rest of the list) and Goff checks in as the No. 1 underclassman quarterback in college football.
Here are Kiper’s thoughts on Kessler: "In 2014, he put together one of the most overlooked stellar seasons in recent memory, throwing for 3,826 yards with 39 TDs against just 5 INTs. Perhaps most impressively, he completed a hair under 70 percent of his throws. He has also shown he can succeed when taking snaps from under center, not just out of the shotgun. He lacks elite physical tools, but his anticipation and accuracy are ahead of the pack."
And his thoughts on Goff: "Don't scoff at the system Cal employs and assume anybody will put up the 3,973 yards and 35 TD passes (against just 7 INTs) that Goff did in 2014. He has a big-time arm and shows the ability to read defenses and move defenders with his eyes. After another year of development, Goff could be the top contender to be the first 2016 QB off the board."
We’re expecting some big-time numbers and play out of several other quarterbacks. Seasoned backup-turned-starter Mike Bercovici is poised for a big year. As is veteran Kevin Hogan, second-year starter Anu Solomon, gritty Travis Wilson, etc.
Once again, QB play should be very entertaining. And the end result could be a couple of high draft picks in 2016.