Every Badger passing leader since 2000

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Over the past two decades, Wisconsin football has had its ups and downs at the quarterback position. From future NFL Hall of Famers to players struggling in their lone year as starters, the Badgers have seen it all under center in recent years.

This season everything rides on the right arm of Graham Mertz, who has seen his fair share of ups and down throughout his first two years as lead signal caller in Madison. From a dynamic debut performance that had Patrick Mahomes talking, to struggles taking care of the football it has been an inconsistent pair of seasons for the Kansas native.

Ahead of Mertz’s 2022 season, here is a look at the recent history of Badger signal callers:

2000 Passing Leader: Brooks Bollinger (52.6%, 1479 yards, 10 touchdowns, 7 interceptions)

Oct 13, 2001; Columbus, OH, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Brooks Bollinger (5) throws with pressure from Ohio State Buckeyes linebacker Na’il Diggs (32) at Ohio Stadium. The Badgers beat the Buckeyes 20-17. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

2001 Passing Leader: Brooks Bollinger (51.4%, 1257 yards, 6 touchdowns, 4 interceptions)

Oct 13, 2001; Columbus, OH, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Brooks Bollinger (5) throws with pressure from Ohio State Buckeyes linebacker Na’il Diggs (32) at Ohio Stadium. The Badgers beat the Buckeyes 20-17. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

2002 Passing Leader: Brooks Bollinger (53.5%, 1758 yards, 14 touchdowns, 4 interceptions)

Oct 13, 2001; Columbus, OH, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Brooks Bollinger (5) throws with pressure from Ohio State Buckeyes linebacker Na’il Diggs (32) at Ohio Stadium. The Badgers beat the Buckeyes 20-17. Mandatory Credit: Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

2003 Passing Leader: Jim Sorgi (56.5%, 2251, 17 touchdowns, 9 interceptions)

Wisconsin quarterback Jim Sorgi (19) gets sandwiched by Auburn defenders Reggie Torbor and Karlos Dansby, causing him to fumble in the fourth quarter. Auburn defeated Wisconsin 28-14 before 55,109 in the Music City Bowl in Nashville Dec. 31, 2003.
Music City Bowl

2004 Passing Leader: John Stocco (52.6%, 1999 yards, 9 touchdowns, 7 interceptions)

November 4, 2006; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback (7) John Stocco looks to pass as Penn State Nittany Lions linebacker (40) Dan Connor defends at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Photo By Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports Copyright (c) 2006 Jeff Hanisch

2005 Passing Leader: John Stocco (60.1%, 2920 yards, 21 touchdowns, 9 interceptions)

Jan 1, 2005, Tampa, FL, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback #7 John Stocco in second half action against the Georgia Bulldogs at the 2005 Outback Bowl.The Georgia Bulldogs defeated the Wisconsin Badgers 24-21.
Mandatory Credit: Photo By Paul Chapman-USA TODAY Sports
Copyright (c) 2005 Paul Chapman

2006 Passing Leader: John Stocco (59%, 2185 yards, 17 touchdowns, 6 interceptions)

Jan 1, 2007, Orlando, FL, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback (7) John Stocco looks to pass as Arkansas Razorbacks defensive tackle (90) Ernest Mitchell defends in the Badgers 17-14 victory against the Razorbacks during the Capital One Bowl at Citrus Bowl Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports Copyright © 2007 Bob Donnan

2007 Passing Leader: Tyler Donovan (58%, 2607 yards, 17 touchdowns, 11 interceptions)

November 10, 2007; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Tyler Donovan (12) scrambles with the football as Michigan Wolverines linebacker Chris Graham (37) defends at Camp Randall Stadium. The Badgers defeated the Wolverines 37-21. Mandatory Credit: Photo By Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports Copyright (c) 2007 Jeff Hanisch

2008 Passing Leader: Dustin Sherer (54.5%, 1389 yards, 6 touchdowns, 5 interceptions)

Oct 25, 2008; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Dustin Sherer (18) throws a pass during the second quarter against the Illinois Fighting Illini at Camp Randall Stadium. Wisconsin defeated Illinois 27-17. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

2009 Passing Leader: Scott Tolzien (64.3%, 2705 yards, 16 touchdowns, 11 interceptions)

Sep 26, 2009; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Scott Tolzien (16) throws a pass during the second quarter against the Michigan State Spartans at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

2010 Passing Leader: Scott Tolzien (72.9%, 2459 yards, 16 touchdowns, 6 interceptions)

Nov 20, 2010; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Scott Tolzien (16) in the NCAA football game against the Michigan Wolverines at Michigan Stadium. Wisconsin defeated Michigan 48-28. Mandatory Credit: Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

2011 Passing Leader: Russell Wilson (72.8%, 3175, 33 touchdowns, 4 interceptions)

Sep 1, 2011; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Russell Wilson (16) warms up prior to the game against the UNLV Rebels at Camp Randall Stadium. The Badgers defeated the Rebels 51-17. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

2012 Passing Leader: Joel Stave (58.8%, 1104 yards, 6 touchdowns, 3 interceptions)

Sep 14, 2013; Tempe, AZ, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Joel Stave (2) throws a two yard touchdown during the first half against the Arizona State Sun Devils at Sun Devil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

2013 Passing Leader: Joel Stave (61.9%, 2494 yards, 22 touchdowns, 13 interceptions)

Oct 11, 2014; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Joel Stave (2) during the game against the Illinois Fighting Illini at Camp Randall Stadium. Wisconsin won 38-28. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

2014 Passing Leader: Joel Stave (53.4%, 1350 yards, 9 touchdowns, 10 interceptions)

Oct 19, 2013; Champaign, IL, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Joel Stave (2) hands off the ball to running back Corey Clement (6) late in the game against the Illinois Fighting Illini at Memorial Stadium. Wisconsin wins 56-32 over Illinois. Mandatory Credit: Trevor Ruszkowksi-USA TODAY Sports

2015 Passing Leader: Joel Stave (60.8%, 2687 yards, 11 touchdowns, 11 interceptions)

Dec 30, 2015; San Diego, CA, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Joel Stave (2) gestures against the USC Trojans during the first quarter in the 2015 Holiday Bowl at Qualcomm Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

2016 Passing Leader: Alex Hornibrook (58.6%, 1262 yards, 9 touchdowns, 7 interceptions)

Oct 20, 2018; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Alex Hornibrook (12) throws a pass during the first quarter against the Illinois Fighting Illini at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

2017 Passing Leader: Alex Hornibrook (62.3%, 2644 yards, 25 touchdowns, 15 interceptions)

Oct 13, 2018; Ann Arbor, MI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Alex Hornibrook (12) during the game against the Michigan Wolverines at Michigan Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports

2018 Passing Leader: Alex Hornibrook (59.5%, 1532 yards, 13 touchdowns, 11 interceptions)

Nov 24, 2018; Madison, WI, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Alex Hornibrook (12) walks off the field following an interception during the second quarter against the Minnesota Golden Gophers at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

2019 Passing Leader: Jack Coan (69.6%, 2727 yards, 18 touchdowns, 5 interceptions)

Wisconsin quarterback Jack Coan (17) reacts after running for first down during the first quarter of their Big 10 Championship game against Ohio State Saturday, December 7, 2019 at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis, Ind.MARK HOFFMAN/MILWAUKEE JOURNAL SENTINEL
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2020 Passing Leader: Graham Mertz (61.1%, 1238 yards, 9 touchdowns, 5 interceptions)

MINNEAPOLIS, MN – NOVEMBER 27: Graham Mertz #5 of the Wisconsin Badgers looks to pass against the Minnesota Golden Gophers in the second quarter of the game at Huntington Bank Stadium on November 27, 2021 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by David Berding/Getty Images)

2021 Passing Leader: Graham Mertz (59.5%, 1958 yards, 10 touchdowns, 11 interceptions)

Nov 13, 2021; Madison, Wisconsin, USA; Wisconsin Badgers quarterback Graham Mertz (5) throws a pass under pressure from Northwestern Wildcats defensive lineman Sean McLaughlin (97) during the second quarter at Camp Randall Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

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Story originally appeared on Badgers Wire