2024 NFL Draft: QBs to watch in week 12 of college football

The college football season almost feels like a blur. Somehow, there are only two weeks left of the regular season, and we are less than a month away from bowl season kicking off.

This college season has been amazing to watch. The College Football Playoff race is wide open and waiting for that signature late-season loss to allow an underdog to take their place.

As the season dwindles, the matchups get more difficult. And more intriguing.

There will be signature performances up for grabs, like Jayden Daniels and his record-breaking day against Florida last week. Who will be the next quarterback to grab the attention of scouts and fans alike?

We will find out in one of the games listed below:

  • Colorado @ Washington State (Friday, 9:30 p.m. CST, FS1)

  • #3 Michigan @ Maryland (11 a.m. CST, Fox)

  • #14 Oklahoma @ BYU (11 a.m. CST, ESPN)

  • #24 Tulane @ Florida Atlantic (11 a.m. CST, ESPN+)

  • Coastal Carolina @ Army (11 a.m. CST, CBSSN)

  • #1 Georgia @ #18 Tennessee (2:30 p.m. CST, CBS)

  • Wake Forest @ #19 Notre Dame (2:30 p.m. CST, NBC)

  • #20 North Carolina @ Clemson (2:30 p.m. CST, ESPN)

  • UCLA @ USC (2:30 p.m. CST, ABC)

  • #6 Oregon @ Arizona State (3 p.m. CST, BTN)

  • North Alabama @ #4 Florida State (5:30 p.m. CST, CW Network)

  • #5 Washington @ #11 Oregon State (6:30 p.m. CST, ABC)

  • Kentucky @ South Carolina (6:30 p.m. CST, SECN)

  • Florida International @ Arkansas (6:30 p.m. CST, ESPNU)

  • #7 Texas @ Iowa State (7 p.m. CST, Fox)

  • Georgia State @ #15 LSU (7 p.m. CST, ESPN2)

Michigan QB J.J. McCarthy

USA Today Sports
USA Today Sports

What was supposed to be #3 Michigan quarterback J.J. McCarthy’s first true test became a game to skip in his evaluation.

The Wolverines wanted to mitigate Penn State’s pass rush by running the football and did so to the tune of 227 yards on 46 carries. Michigan threw the ball eight times, all in the first half of the game.

Hopefully, against Maryland (11 a.m. CST, Fox), McCarthy has more opportunities to throw the ball as they figure out what this passing game looks like without head coach Jim Harbaugh on the sideline.

On the other side, Maryland quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa has the most attempts and yards of any quarterback in the Big Ten.

This game has all the makings of a good old-fashioned shootout.

Washington QB Michael Penix Jr.

Jonathan Hui-USA TODAY Sports
Jonathan Hui-USA TODAY Sports

In a top-15 primetime battle, #5 Washington takes on #11 Oregon State (6:30 p.m. CST, ABC).

Washington is doing everything in their power to stay alive in the hunt for the College Football Playoff. They’re currently fifth in points scored per game and sixth in yards per game.

That’s all behind their number-one-ranked passing game and their Heisman-hopeful quarterback Michael Penix Jr.

Penix continues to impress with his rocket arm and downfield ball placement.

The chemistry he has with his All-World receiving corps is apparent in every throw he makes. His confidence to push the ball down the field and his ability to make every throw make this Washington team that much more dangerous down the stretch.

Colorado QB Shedeur Sanders

Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports
Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

One of the most intriguing quarterback battles of the weekend doesn’t occur on Saturday.

On Friday, Colorado and Washington State square off in a late-night Pac-12 battle (9:30 p.m. CST, FS1) that we will all miss after this season.

On one side, we have the always-exciting-to-talk-about Colorado Buffs and their quarterback Shedeur Sanders.

Yes, they’ve vanished out of the spotlight after dropping four straight games.

Yes, they may have one of the worst defenses in college football.

But Sanders is one of the more fun prospects we will find in this year’s (or next year’s) draft.

So, no matter when he finally decides to join the NFL ranks, enjoy the show that he puts on at Colorado while he’s there.

Washington State QB Cam Ward

Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports
Darren Yamashita-USA TODAY Sports

On the other side of the duel is another quarterback leading a team that desperately needs a victory as well.

After four wins to start the season, the Washington State Cougars have dropped six games in a row.

During the skid, their quarterback Cam Ward has gone 168/266 (63.1%) for seven touchdowns and five interceptions. He’s also added three touchdowns on the ground.

Washington State’s offensive line has done Ward no favors as he has had to have been Superman to get this offense off the ground. In his last game against California, he had 59 attempts as the Golden Bears caused three fumbles and one interception, including two scoop-and-score touchdowns.

Ward will probably return for one more year after his 2023 season has not gone the way that he expected. But, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t enjoy him dueling it out against Sanders (Friday, 9:30 p.m. CST, FS1).

USC QB Caleb Williams

Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports
Troy Wayrynen-USA TODAY Sports

The football portion of the Crosstown Cup is on Saturday as USC takes on UCLA in the Coliseum on Saturday (2:30 p.m. CST, ABC).

USC has put up the following point totals in the last five contests:

48, 34, 50, 52 and 36.

They lost four of those five contests.

Needless to say, Caleb Williams and this USC offense is not the issue.

As we near the end of Williams’ tenure at USC, this matchup against UCLA will be a tough out, as UCLA surely hasn’t forgotten how USC narrowly escaped them last season.

Not to mention the Bruins’ 10th-ranked defense and second-ranked rushing defense. It will be up to Williams and this passing game to notch another victory for the Trojans.

North Carolina QB Drake Maye

USA Today Sports
USA Today Sports

#20 North Carolina just got done escaping their biggest rival Duke behind the arm and legs of their top prospect quarterback Drake Maye.

Maye was 28-of-43 for 342 yards with a touchdown and an interception, while also adding two more touchdowns on the ground.

Maye has helped lead the Tar Heels to the third-best offense in total yards gained and eighth-best in both passing yards and points scored.

Now, they have to flip their focus to the team that dismantled them 39-10 in last year’s ACC Championship game: Clemson.

Maye and North Carolina are looking to keep this year’s ACC Championship hopes alive with a win against the Tigers, but it will be no easy feat. Clemson allows the sixth-fewest yards in the country, including the eighth-fewest passing yards.

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Story originally appeared on Vikings Wire