FanPost

Where James Vandenberg Ranks Among the B10 Quarterbacks




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(Please excuse if this is TL;DR , all stats are from ESPN.)


The good folks up in Iowa are preparing for another eventful year in Iowa City and are yearning for the Legends division crown. Now I'm not exactly a full blooded Iowan as I am a Kansas Jayhawk, but even Kansans enjoy Big 10 football and share a hatred for Iowa State. Even our neighboring NFL team, the KC Chiefs, has Iowa's prodigy QB Ricky Stanzi, who should be starting over Matt Cassel. None the less Iowa will have a great year in 2012, and part of that will be due to Iowa's great QB in James Vandenberg. Where does he rank among the Big 10 QB’s? #1.

1. Iowa: This may be Iowa bias ranking James Vandenberg as the # 1 QB in the Big 10, but when you look at his production over the least year it is clear that he is deserving of this rank. The unique part about James he tends to stray from the traditional Big 10 method of running the ball, and instead posses a talent that was uncommon among the Big 10 QB’s last year, that trait is passing the ball. James threw for a league high 3022 yds. and 25 TD passes.

2. Michigan: While you can debate that Denard Robinson is the best QB in the Big 10, and possibly all of CFB, I find that Denard is limited by his passing capabilities and is only effective as a running QB. Denrard had the most rushing yards of any QB in the big 10 and dished out effective increments of offense as he ran for 1176 yds. and 16 TDs. Less could be said about his passing skills. Robinson threw for 2173 yards and had 20 TD passes, but he also threw 15 interceptions and wields a dismal 55.0% completion rate.

3. Illinois: I believe that many fans dismiss the Illini due to their 6 game losing streak, though one stands clear: Nathan Scheelhaase is not to be messed with. As one of the most underrated QB in the Big 10, Nathan has shown his offensive capabilities both throwing and running the ball. Nathan rushed for 624 yds. and 6 TDs and passed the ball for 2110 yds. and 13 TDs to combine for a total of 2734 yds. and 19 TDs at the helm of the Illini.

4. Nebraska: How good is Nebraska QB Taylor Martinez? Mixed opinions swirl about when that question is asked. I for one think that he has similar properties to Illinois QB Nathan Scheelhaase in that he is a dual threat QB. While his lack luster 56.3 % completion rate is nothing to get exited about, his ability to run and pass the ball is. Taylor threw for 2089 yds. and 13 TDs and ran for 874 yds. and 9 TDs that amassed for 2963 yards of total offense & 21 TDs.

5. Purdue: Over the past 10 years or so the Purdue Boilermaker’s have shown that their strong suit is defiantly Basketball, as it should be being in Hoosier country. Though Purdue can usually muster up a decent football team form time to time, and would be ranked higher if Drew Brees were still at Purdue, in 2012 the Boilermakers wield one of the more decent QBs in the Big 10 in Caleb TerBush. Caleb passed for 1905 yds. and 13 TDs for Purdue last season and had a 67.1% CMP.

6. Northwestern: The Wildcats enter the 2012 season having to tackle an uneasy task in replacing QB Dan Persa. Dan passes the torch down to Kain Colter who had some exposure to the turf last season. Dan had split his offensive possesions running and passing the ball, like a poor man’s Taylor Martinez, as he threw for 673 yds. and 6 TDs and rushed the ball for 654 yds. 9 TDs. With 67.1 % completion rate and the exposure he recived last season, the 2012 campaign looks bright for QB Kain Colter.

7. Ohio State: OSU’ QB Braxton Miller received mixed praises and slack as his Sophomore debut wasn’t all that bad for his first starting year, though he now has the pressure of performing as a vetran in 2012. Braxton collected a total of 1874 total yards of offense and had 20 TDs in his first season as starter, let’s just hop he can improve his skills (54.1 % completion rate).

8. Wisconsin: For the second year in a row the Wisconsin Badgers have snatched an ACC QB and made them their starter, Russel Wilson from North Carolina State and now Danny O’Brien from Maryland (what’s next, Tanner Price of Wake Forest?). I’m Not buying into Danny O’Brien’s “amazing skill set”. Danny had a pitiful year at Maryland last year throwing for only 1648 yds. and had 7-10 TD-INT. perhaps the transition to the “smash mouth” format of the Big 10 will help Danny, but as far as I’m concerned Danny O’Brien is no Russel Wilson.

9. Minnesota: If you’re expecting a high power offense from the 2012 Gopher’s team think again. QB MarQueis Gray already had a hard enough time (50.7 % completion) getting the ball to his receivers, add In the fact that his top target Da’Jon McKnight is no longer in Minnesota, that fact only hinders MarQuies’ chances of improving. On the bright side he did amass a total of 2461 yards of offense and 14 TDs last season, though his accuracy (8-8 TD-INT) must improve if he expects his Minnesota Golden Gophers team to be competitive in the Big 10.

10. Penn State: Obliviously things aren’t so happy in the Happy Valley anymore: at least not for the next 4 years or so. The fact the Penn State has knowledge that they won’t be playing past November won’t motivate this Nittany Lions team, but the their field general won’t be to motivating as well. Matthew McGloin didn’t successfully run the ball once last year, and only threw for 1571 yds. and 8 TDs. Matthew did get help form his highly ranked defense and RB sensation Silas Redd and his back up Rob Bolden, but now all have jumped ship and left Matt and the PSU organization in a giant, smoldering crater.

11. Indiana: Is it November yet in Indiana? The Hoosier have plenty reason to be exited for the upcoming basketball season, unfortunately the football season is just around the corner for the Hoosiers and things look as bleak as usual. Tre Roberson isn’t quite the Heisman level QB that the Hoosiers would love to see, but should live up to the standards that Indiana has placed before him (pretty low). Tre’s inaccuracy at throwing ball is now hindering his effectiveness production points as he threw 3 TDs and 6 picks last season as a back up. Perhaps he should just stick to running ball as he did have some success at that (426 yds. 2 TDs).

12. Michigan State: I don’t believe that QB Andrew Maxwell should have to demean himself as the worst QB in the Big 10, at least not by novice’s pre season opinion. Until the progress of the 2012 season shows Andrew improving, I remain skeptical of his full potential. In the few glimpses of action Andrew got to see last year, he recorded 171 yards and a touchdown with a 69.2 CMP to boot. I am confident that Andrew will be one of the better QB’s in the Big 10, though in pre season it is hard to place him.

Unless otherwise expressly indicated by BHGP editors, this FanPost is strictly the viewpoint of the author and is not endorsed by BHGP in any way.

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