B1G QB Rankings after Week 1: Fresh faces are spinning the laces
Quarterbacks don’t get the luxury of a test run.
From the first snap of the first game, the guy under center is put under the microscope and his performance is dissected more than any other position in the game.
Is it fair? No. Are we going to do it anyway? Of course.
Before diving into the rankings, it’s only fair to give you this warning: the rankings aren’t a direct reflection of how each quarterback played in Week 1. Some guys have a track record, and I wanted to take that into account. Some guys faced off against ranked opponents, and others were lined up across from a cupcake squad. I wanted to take that into account, too.
There’s your warning. Now, feel free to fly off the handle.
14. Adrian Martinez, Nebraska
We’ll have to wait another week to see the versatile freshman in action.
vs. Akron: No stats, game cancelled
13. Artur Sitkowski, Rutgers
The true freshman had a few Week 1 jitters, throwing three interceptions and hurling passes into traffic a little too frequently. He did complete two-thirds of his passes, which is a good start. But Sitkowski goes from Texas State in Week 1 to Ohio State in Week 2. This could be a frightening experience for the freshman.
vs. Texas State: 20-of-30, 205 yards, 1 TD, 3 INTs
12. AJ Bush, Illinois
Bush showed off his versatility against Kent State, throwing for 190 yards and rushing for 139 more. The graduate transfer seems to be a suitable fit under the center for the Illini. But can he win some games, or even help Illinois be competitive this season?
vs. Kent State: 13-of-23, 190 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INT
11. Zack Annexstad, Minnesota
Remove the under 50% completion rate and the first outing out for the true freshman walk-on couldn’t have gone much better. He got the ball into the hands of his playmakers (Tyler Johnson and Rodney Smith), threw for over 200 yards and had two touchdown passes without an interception. That’s about all you can ask.
vs. NMSU: 16-of-33, 220 yards, 2 TDs, 0 INT
10. Peyton Ramsey, Indiana
Assuming he fends off Michael Penix Jr. to retain his starting job, Ramsey is a quarterback who could climb into the top half of the B1G. He’s consistent, he’s mobile and he’s accurate. The sophomore is a slightly less-developed version of Michigan State’s Brian Lewerke. He played well against FIU, but Ramsey still needs to prove he can do it in bigger games.
vs. FIU: 20-of-27, 156 yards, 3 TDs, 1 INT
9. Elijah Sindelar, Purdue
Sindelar won the starting job at Purdue only to throw three interceptions in the first half of the Boilermakers’ season opener against Northwestern. The junior has one of the better arms in the B1G, but he takes a lot of risks down the field. Better decision-making probably would’ve resulted in a Purdue win.
vs. Northwestern: 18-of-30, 196 yards, 1 TD, 3 INT
8. Nate Stanley, Iowa
Iowa’s offense was ugly in the first half before finally getting some points on the board in the final two quarters. There wasn’t much to like about Stanley’s performance, either. He’s not nearly as bad as his numbers would suggest, but he’ll have to be a lot better against Iowa State this Saturday.
vs. NIU: 11-of-23, 108 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
7. Clayton Thorson, Northwestern
Hard to gauge how effective Thorson can be for the Wildcats early in the year. The senior was on a pitch count against Purdue, rotating in with TJ Green throughout the night. Thorson had a nice outing, but nothing special. It’ll be interesting to see if Pat Fitzgerald continues to ease his quarterback into more snaps following the ACL injury.
vs. Purdue: 16-of-26, 172 yards, 0 TDs, 0 INT
6. Shea Patterson, Michigan
A disappointing start to one of the most anticipated years in program history. Folks expected Patterson to be the savior at Michigan, but things didn’t go as planned in South Bend. Patterson is still ridiculously talented, he just got off to a slow start with the Wolverines.
vs. No. 12 Notre Dame: 20-of-30, 227 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
5. Kasim Hill, Maryland
Hill’s numbers weren’t special against Texas, but his effort helped push the Terrapins to the upset win to open the year. Despite last year’s injury, Hill can be a dangerous weapon for Maryland. And he might just be the perfect guy for Matt Canada’s offense.
vs. No. 23 Texas: 17-of-29, 222 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
4. Alex Hornibrook, Wisconsin
Consistent, cool and crisp. Hornibrook took a lot of the blame for Wisconsin’s loss to Ohio State in last year’s B1G Championship Game, and his issues with interceptions were criticized heavily last fall, most of which was unnecessary. He’s off to a solid start this season.
vs. WKU: 17-of-29, 257 yards, 2 TDs, 0 INT
3. Trace McSorley, Penn State
A bit underwhelming for a Heisman Trophy candidate, but McSorley came through in the big moment, throwing a touchdown pass late in the game to send the Week 1 matchup against Appalachian State into overtime. The senior still has the clutch gene, but his numbers weren’t great to start the year.
vs. App. State: 20-of-35, 229 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
2. Brian Lewerke, Michigan State
Without much help from his offensive line, Lewerke threw for nearly 300 yards and two touchdowns while adding 31 yards with his legs. The Michigan State gunslinger also made some huge plays in the clutch. If the Spartans return to full strength and improve up front, watch out.
vs. Utah State: 23-of-33, 287 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INT
1. Dwayne Haskins, Ohio State
vs. Oregon State: 22-of-30, 313 yards, 5 TDs, 1 INT
Replacing J.T. Barrett on a team that won a B1G Championship a year ago and you’re missing your head coach? Haskins had every reason to show some first-game jitters and sputter in his first outing. Instead, he dominated and proved to everyone why folks in Columbus have such high expectations.