Forget the Tebow’s, Bradford’s and McCoy’s of this world for just a minute. We're here to take a look at five quarterbacks you have probably never heard of.
They're from smaller football schools, but hey, their numbers are great and they could have a great future. Remember what Joe Flacco—out of the University of Delaware—is now doing in the NFL?
5. Rusty Smith, Florida Atlantic (Junior)
Smith didn't have a statistical season like last year (3688 yards, 32 touchdowns, nine interceptions), but his season was good enough to move Florida Atlantic to the Motor City Bowl. Smith threw for 22 touchdowns and 2,918 yards this season, but his 14 interceptions are what plagued him.
While the Owls are just 6-6, they did make a bowl game. A lack of superstar talent elsewhere on the field made Smith step-up and take charge. He and Cortez Gent hooked up for eight touchdowns this season.
4. David Johnson, Tulsa (Senior)
David Johnson just found ways to get it done this season, it's that simple. Johnson aired it out for nearly 3,900 yards and threw 43 touchdown passes, while throwing 18 picks in his first year as a starter. His 179 passer rating was one of the best in the nation, and helped his Golden Hurricane team to the Conference-USA Championship game, where they fell to East Carolina.
Tulsa had a 10-3 overall record behind Johnson, which led them to a January bowl game—they'll take on Ball State in the GMAC Bowl. Tulsa was 7-1 in C-USA where there are underrated teams like East Carolina, Rice, Houston and Southern Miss.
3. Colin Kaepernick, Nevada (Sophomore)
It's not unusual for a quarterback to lead the team in passing, but Kaepernick led the Wolf Pack in rushing, as well. Amassing 2,479 yards and 19 touchdowns passing with just five interceptions went very nicely with 1,115 yards and 16 touchdowns passing, with no fumbles.
This 6' 6" sophomore led Nevada to a 7-5 overall record, and second in the WAC (behind unbeaten Boise State.) Kaepernick had 246 total yards and three total touchdowns in a 41-28 win over Fresno State back on November 7th.
2. Dan LeFevour, Central Michigan (Junior)
This season wasn't as dominating for LeFevour as his past two seasons, but he is still one of the most dangerous quarterbacks in the nation. He missed two games during the season, and still threw 19 touchdowns and just five picks. He also carried the ball close to 160 times for over 500 yards. He is not a fast runner, but a smart runner.
LeFevour led the Chippewas to an 8-4 overall record, and 6-2 record in the MAC. But, don't think lightly of the MAC as teams like Ball State, Buffalo and Western Michigan give them tough competition.
Central Michigan will square off with Florida Atlantic in the Motor City Bowl.
1. Case Keenum, Houston (Sophomore)
Simply a beast, Keenum did not throw less then 317 yards in a single game this season. His 4,768 yards and 43 passing touchdowns tore defenses quietly apart. Keenum can carry the ball, too, on occasion. Against Oklahoma State, Case ran nine times for 81 yards. Keenum was sacked 24 times this season, but that's not all his fault.
Keenum's airing-it-out style of play got the Cougars to a 7-5 overall record as well as a bowl birth versus Air Force. His stats are incredible, except have you ever heard of him? Most likely not.
There you have it. Look out for these guys on Sunday in a few years. With they're athletic play, all five of these guys could make a NFL squad some day.
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