It’s time, once again, to work our way through the summer with our Big 12 position rankings. With these posts we give our opinions on each of the offensive and defensive position groups and rank them from first to worst. We only defend our top three and bottom two in the rankings and while we’re sure to say something that’s out of this world crazy it’s also a great way to get football conversations going. So, enjoy and make sure to sound off with your opinions in the comments section below.
This time around the Heartland Sports writers give their take on the quarterbacks across the conference, ranking them from first to worst. Then they are asked to defend their top three and bottom two rankings.
The consensus rankings below come from a points system. A first place selection is worth 14 points, second place is 13 points, and they continue in descending order with tenth place equaling 1 point.
Heartland Sports Consensus Quarterback Rankings
|4. Kansas State||34|
|7. Texas Tech||24|
|13. Oklahoma State||5|
|14. Iowa State||4|
Unanimity – We all agreed that Cincinnati is at #11 and West Virginia is at #12.
Almost Agreed – We were close on seven different programs with two of us giving them the same ranking, only for the third to come in and mess it up.
All Over The Place – We didn’t agree at all on Texas Tech, Baylor, and Houston.
Individual Thoughts And Rankings
1. Oklahoma | Dillon Gabriel will have the keys to the Sooners offense once again in 2023. He wasn’t the Heisman caliber QB that Oklahoma has been used to over the years, but he is no doubt one of the best in the conference. Gabriel threw for over 3,000 yards last year and recorded 25 touchdowns with only 6 interceptions. With five star recruit Jackson Arnold as the backup the Sooners have the best QB room in the Big 12.
2. Texas | Texas might have the QB with the higher ceiling in Quinn Ewers. That being said, I can’t put him above Dillon Gabriel when he’s only played one full season of college football. He threw for over 2,000 yards last year and had 15 touchdowns through the air.
3. Kansas | Jalon Daniels was one of the more electric quarterbacks in the country during the month of September last year. But, much like Quinn Ewers it’s hard to rank him any higher with such a small sample size. He suffered an injury that sidelined him for most of 2022. Before being injured he threw for over 2,000 yards and had 18 touchdown passes to only 4 interceptions. Hopefully Daniels can stay healthy this season, because I think he can take the Jayhawks a long way.
4. Kansas State
7. Texas Tech
12. West Virginia
13. Iowa State | Hunter Dekkers is going to be done playing college football after his gambling scandal. Which leaves Iowa State with essentially no one as QB1. It will be between redshirt freshman Rocco Becht and true freshman JJ Kohl for the starting job.
14. Oklahoma State | The Cowboys have without a doubt the worst QB room in the Big 12. They might even have one of the worst QB rooms out of all power 5 teams. Alan Bowman is the most likely option, but Gunnar Gundy and Garret Rangel will compete for some playing time as well.
1. Kansas | Jalon Daniels is the media’s preseason pick for 1st Team All-Big 12 and with good reason. He finished 2nd Team All-Big 12 last season behind Heisman candidate Max Duggan of TCU, and Daniels is a dual threat quarterback who is looking to return Kansas to a winning season.
2. Oklahoma | Dillon Gabriel had a less than stellar debut year last year in Norman, but it wasn’t entirely his fault. He was sacked 25 times, largely due to the inconsistency of the offensive line, but if his timing has improved, he could lead the Sooners back to a place of former glory.
3. Kansas State | Will Howard is an electric quarterback who made a name for himself filling in for the injured Adrian Martinez in 2022. Howard was a key piece to the Wildcats winning the Big 12 Championship game, but I’m sure he’s looking for redemption after a poor finish to the season against Alabama in the Sugar Bowl.
8. Texas Tech
12. West Virginia
13. Oklahoma State | Former Texas Tech Red Raider and Michigan Wolverine Alan Bowman looks to be the starter for the Cowboys entering the season, but he’s thrown just 11 total passes across 4 games in the last 2 seasons. Garret Rangel could end up beating him out for the spot, though, but that shouldn’t really get Cowboy fans much more excited.
14. Iowa State | In the midst of a gambling scandal, the Cyclones are looking at a redshirt freshman and a true freshman as their top two options. Drama + inexperience = bottom of the QB rankings.
1. Oklahoma | Dillon Gabriel passed for 3,168 yards and 25 touchdowns in 2022 and was named the Big 12 Offensive Newcomer of the Year. Keeping him healthy is vital to Oklahoma’s success in 2023, should an emergency situation occur again this fall having former 5-star recruit Jackson Arnold on the sidelines is a huge step of progress from a year ago.
2. Kansas | Jalon Daniels is the quarterback in the conference that should be talked about more. He was possibly the most dangerous quarterback in the conference a year ago before being sidelined by injury. His 544 yard performance against Arkansas in the Liberty Bowl should serve as a warning to Big 12 defensive coordinators that he’s back and healthy.
3. Texas | Quinn Ewers is the quarterback who is getting the most publicity in the preseason and will probably have the most pressure on his shoulders. The departure of Bijan Robinson to the NFL is going to result in some adjustments for both his offense and opposing defenses. His 58.1% completion percentage in 2022 was a solid start to his Texas career but the expectation is going to be higher this fall.
4. Kansas State
6. Texas Tech
12. West Virginia
13. Oklahoma State | The departure of Spencer Sanders (Ole Miss) left Mike Gundy looking into the transfer portal where he landed Alan Bowman from Michigan. Bowman returns to the Big 12 where he once had a high ceiling at Texas Tech. There is something to be said about Stillwater being his third college destination though.
14. Iowa State | The gambling sandal has dropped the Cyclones to the bottom of this list. Hunter Dekkers would have had ISU in the top half of these rankings but he’s not with the team and it doesn’t look promising that he’ll return. Now Matt Campbell is looking to Rocco Becht or true freshman J.J. Kohl to run the offense.
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