We have another week of college football among us and the draft-eligible quarterbacks are seeing the more difficult stretches to end their seasons.
The class of the Big Ten East are going to start facing each other and beat up on one another. The SEC and Big 12 juggernauts will stat to knock each other out. The Pac-12 has been insane all season in their swan song, so this week will be no different.
It makes for a great weekend of college football that gives these quarterbacks the opportunity to shine in the brightest lights.
Here are some of the games to watch when it comes to 2024 NFL draft-eligible quarterbacks this weekend:
#15 Notre Dame @ Clemson (11 a.m. CST, ABC)
Jacksonville State @ South Carolina (11 a.m. CST, ESPNU)
Campbell @ North Carolina (11 a.m. CST, ACCN)
#4 Florida State @ Pittsburgh (2:30 p.m. CST, ESPN)
#9 Oklahoma @ #22 Oklahoma State (2:30 p.m. CST, ABC)
Purdue @ #3 Michigan (6:30 p.m. CST, NBC)
Miami @ NC State (7 p.m. CST, ACCN)
Stanford @ Washington State (8 p.m. CST, Pac-12)
#16 Oregon State @ Colorado (9 p.m. CST, ESPN)
Notre Dame QB Sam Hartman
Clemson’s defense is ranked sixth in the country for yards allowed per game and ninth in the country in passing yards allowed. This is thanks to big names on that defense such as Barrett Carter, Jeremiah Trotter, Jr., Nate Wiggins, etc.
Notre Dame’s quarterback Sam Hartman has consistently stayed in the top 20 of the country in passer rating and yards per attempt. He has been an efficient thrower of the football all season and proven that his success isn’t because of the slow-mesh in Wake Forest.
Now he has a chance to prove that he can get it done against a top-flight defense in Clemson on Saturday (11 a.m. CST, ABC).
This play, overshadowed by the Chris Tyree punt return touchdown, deserves some love. It's one of the best throw-catch combinations we've seen from Notre Dame all year.
Under pressure, Sam Hartman puts it in stride for Tyree vs. double coverage. Tyree makes a spectacular grab. pic.twitter.com/6HtOFLorT5
— Tyler Horka (@tbhorka) November 3, 2023
Oklahoma QB Dillon Gabriel
Since their stunning win against a #3 Texas team two weeks ago, Oklahoma has not looked like the same team. They escaped a scrappy UCF team and Kansas finished the job, beating them last week giving them their first loss of the season.
Now, they are looking to outlast a 22nd-ranked Oklahoma State (2:30 p.m. CST, ABC) that can run the football almost at will.
To combat that, the Sooners will need a big game from their quarterback Dillon Gabriel. He is a good athlete that is dangerous both on the ground and through the air. His eight rushing touchdowns is tied for fourth-most in the country.
He also completed over 70% of his passes and is ninth in quarterback passer rating and 3rd overall in ESPN’s QBR rating. He has been a true dual-threat quarterback and is doing what he can to lift this Oklahoma team back to prominence.
If you weren’t already aware… @_dillongabriel_ is a bad man 😈
— Big 12 Conference (@Big12Conference) October 28, 2023
Maryland QB Taulia Tagovailoa
The last quarterback that I wanted to highlight before getting into the big names is Maryland’s Taulia Tagovailoa.
Ever since hanging 44 points on Indiana, Maryland has been on a three-game losing streak. Now, they have their next mountain to climb in #11 Penn State (2:30 p.m. CST, Fox) and their defense that ranks second in the country in total yards allowed and third in points per game allowed.
If they want to compete, they will need a big game from their quarterback Taulia Tagovailoa.
Tua’s little brother will need to bring all of his playmaking ability to this game if they don’t want to get run off their own field on Saturday.
Since losing to Ohio State (two games), Taulia has been 57-of-86 (66.3%) for 540 yards and five touchdowns with only one interception.
— FOX College Football (@CFBONFOX) October 7, 2023
Michigan QB J.J. McCarthy
Michigan has a rough stretch in front of them as they look to go back to the College Football Playoff. This week, they have a dangerous trap game against Purdue (6:30 p.m. CST, NBC) as #11 Penn State lingers next week.
Their leader at quarterback J.J. McCarthy will have to keep this team focused on the task at hand and help lead this team amidst all the distractions surrounding the program.
McCarthy was the front-runner for the Heisman before Michigan took their bye week last week. But, he has been the most consistent performer this season game-in and game-out. His numbers won’t compare with most of the others, but that’s because Michigan has been beating teams into submission early in games. Leading to McCarthy getting benched to avoid unnecessary hits/injury.
For reference, they have outscored opponents in these first eight games by a total of 325-47.
This team has been rolling and it shouldn’t stop this week.
J.J. McCarthy throws a good seam route. Puts the ball on the back shoulder of the TE. Let your big man box out his defender.
Arm strength + ball placement 👌🏾pic.twitter.com/8zrJrLxnp0
— Full-Time Dame 💰 (@DP_NFL) October 26, 2023
Washington QB Michael Penix, Jr.
This weekend’s premier matchup also is a matchup of two of the top quarterbacks in next year’s draft.
#5 Washington goes on the road to Los Angeles to take on #20 USC (6:30 p.m. CST, ABC).
On the visitor’s side, Washington is trying to keep their national championship hopes alive and stay undefeated.
Michael Penix Jr. has been doing what he can to solidify his status as QB3 in this upcoming draft. The big-armed lefty has helped lead a top-five offense and top passing offense in the country behind the explosives he and that impressive receiving corps.
USC’s defense is…we’ll call it not very formidable. So, this should be a good, old-fashioned Pac-12 shootout.
— FOX College Football (@CFBONFOX) October 29, 2023
USC QB Caleb Williams
On the other side of this primetime face-off, USC doesn’t have much to play for. Williams isn’t winning the Heisman. USC isn’t in contention for the College Football Playoff.
But that doesn’t take away from Williams and his supreme arm talent, mixed with his ability to create both in and out of the structure of the play.
Williams has been holding the mantle of the top prospect in next year’s draft the entire season, with some of the pressure taken off thanks to a few losses, I wonder how Williams and USC take to trying to play the role of spoiler to the top teams in the Pac-12.
— FOX College Football (@CFBONFOX) October 28, 2023
LSU QB Jayden Daniels
Finally, we get to a quarterback who has played himself into some interesting conversations after this season. LSU’s quarterback Jayden Daniels has become the standard for quarterback play over the last month to two months.
Nobody has more yards per pass attempt, he is tied with Williams for the most touchdowns thrown in the country and he has the best quarterback rating.
Daniels has led LSU to the number-one offense in yards gained and points scored while having the third-best passing offense in yards gained.
Daniels and this LSU offense have a huge task in front of them on Saturday night in the form of #8 Alabama (6:45 p.m. CST, CBS).
Biggest improvement for #LSU QB Jayden Daniels this year has been his downfield accuracy. Currently leads the FBS in completions of 20+ yards (49).
He has excellent touch. pic.twitter.com/OWZORkBBF5
— Jordan Reid (@Jordan_Reid) November 2, 2023
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