Week 10 B1G QB Rankings: Rainy weekend no friend to conference's gunslingers
When you play in the B1G, you’re going to run into these kind of weekends at least once a year. Those cold, wet and rainy afternoons in October and November that severely hinder your offensive game plan.
Those elements engulfed almost the entire Midwest on Saturday, presenting some sloppy conditions for our B1G quarterbacks to battle. But, hey, it’s the B1G. What do you expect?
Here’s a look at our B1G quarterback rankings after a wet weekend across the league:
Unranked this week
Michael Penix Jr., Indiana (injury)
Adrian Martinez, Nebraska (injury)
Josh Jackson, Maryland (three QBs used)
11. Aidan Smith, Northwestern
Last week vs #20 Iowa: 18-of-32, 138 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
It’s probably safe to say that the starting job in Evanston, at least for the remainder of this year, belongs to Smith. But he still hasn’t done enough to score points with this Northwestern offense. His performance against Iowa wasn’t awful, but it was the second straight game the Wildcats finished without a touchdown.
Last week: Unranked
10. Johnny Langan, Rutgers
Last week vs. Liberty: 15-of-21, 192 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
How about “Johnny Football” in Piscataway? Not only did Langan end the day with nearly 200 passing yards, he also rushed for 118 yards and a touchdown. Yes, it was done against Liberty, but let’s give Rutgers and Langan some credit this week. It’s been a long season for the Scarlet Knights.
Last week: No. 11
9. Brandon Peters, Illinois
Last week vs. Purdue: 3-of-6, 26 yards, 0 TD, 0 INT
A downpour in West Lafayette probably prevented Peters from being higher on the list this week, but it’s hard to move up a guy who threw just six passes in a game. Hey, the running game got the win over Purdue, so there are no complaints. Peters was pretty active in the ground game on Saturday, too, really mixing things up for the Illini.
Last week: No. 10
8. Jack Plummer, Purdue
Last week vs. Illinois: 8-of-20, 71 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
The elements played a factor, but Plummer’s poor play earned him a spot next to Jeff Brohm on the sidelines during Saturday’s game. Now, there’s an open competition for the starting job in West Lafayette. We’ll see if Plummer retains the job or if Aidan O’Connell is the third Boilermaker to start under center this season.
Last week: No. 8
7. Brian Lewerke, Michigan State
Last week vs. #6 Penn State: 16-of-34, 165, 0 TD, 1 INT
Lewerke hasn’t played very well in the last three games, but he was going up against Wisconsin, Ohio State and Penn State, three of the best defenses in the league. So, it’s at least a little understandable why he’s not putting up great numbers. Still, MSU’s inability to put points on the board is a major issue, and the quarterback shoulders most of that weight.
Last week: No. 10
6. Jack Coan, Wisconsin
Last week vs. #3 Ohio State: 10-of-17, 108 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Saturday served as a wake-up call for the first-year starter at Wisconsin. Coan was introduced to Ohio State’s Chase Young early and often, which is a quarterback’s worst nightmare. After a hot start to the season, Coan has cooled down considerably. It’ll be interesting to see how he handles the final four games.
Last week: No. 4
5. Nate Stanley, Iowa
Last week vs. Northwestern: 12-of-26, 179 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
The B1G’s passing yards leader has played pretty clean games the last two weeks, leading to a pair of Iowa victories. He’s still not putting up a lot of touchdowns, but Stanley is hanging to the football and not taking as many sacks as he did against Michigan and Penn State. It helps.
Last week: No. 7
4. Shea Patterson, Michigan
Last week vs. #8 Notre Dame: 6-of-12, 100 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
Through the first half of the schedule, Patterson took a ton of criticism for his inability to hit open receivers and fumbling the football far too often. But over the last two weeks in games against Penn State and Notre Dame, he’s looked much better, not just as a quarterback but as the heart and soul of the team. Let’s see if he can lead the Wolverines to some big wins down the stretch.
Last week: No. 6
3. Tanner Morgan, Minnesota
Last week vs. Maryland: 12-of-21, 138 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT
Another week, another solid performance from Morgan. Obviously those Minnesota receivers make life a lot easier for their quarterback, but Morgan has still done an excellent job getting the ball to his targets this season. He’ll face his first major test in two weeks, when the Gophers host Penn State and a nasty front seven.
Last week: No. 3
2. Sean Clifford, Penn State
Last week vs. Michigan State: 18-of-32, 189 yards, 4 TD, 1 INT
Penn State has scored eight total touchdowns over the last two weeks, and Clifford has accounted for all of them (7 passing, 1 rushing). Right now, Clifford is playing like one of the best quarterbacks in the country, but isn’t getting quite the recognition he deserves. He’s had an incredible year in State College.
Last week: No. 2
1. Justin Fields, Ohio State
Last week vs. #13 Wisconsin: 12-of-22, 167 yards, 2 TD, 0 INT
Once again, Fields carved up another talented defense like it was no trouble. The Ohio State offense was held in check through the first 30 minutes, but the Buckeyes started clicking in the second half, thanks in large part to Fields. The only question still remaining is whether or not he’ll earn an invitation to the Heisman ceremony.
Last week: No. 1