No BYU team in recent memory has been surrounded by as much hype and high expectations as the 2008…
A Scout.com two star prospect coming out of high schoool. Hall was named First Team All-Mountain West Conference last season after leading BYU to a 11-2 record with a win in the Pioneer Las Vegas Bowl.
BigPurpleNation.com Reasoning: After stepping in for Cade Cooper last season, Max Hall quickly became a rising star. With his top receiver back (Austin Collie) and a offensive line returning everyone but the center. Hall could be the Mountain West Player of the Year if BYU can win the conference.
Rated by Scout.com as the 73rd quarterback coming out of the country his senior year. Dalton was an Honorable-Mention Freshman All-American last season. The quarterback set a TCU single-season record for completions and attempts while placing second in passing yards.
BigPurpleNation.com Reasoning: It's never easy for a redshirt freshman quarterback to come in and lead a team. Andy Dalton did that very thing last year. The eleven interceptions are a concern, but eight of them came in the first eight games. While he's not a dangerous runner, he's mobile enough to take off from time to time and good around the goal line with five touchdowns to go along with his 232 yards. With a year of experience under his belt, the return of running back Aaron Brown, and the emergence of sophomore wide receiver Jimmy Young, Dalton is ready to make the jump from starter to star in the Mountain West Conference.
After throwing for close to 3,000 yards and 18 touchdowns as a sophomore in 2005, Johnson missed 2006 with a knee injury. He returned to the field last year to lead Utah to an 8-2 record when he started.
BigPurpleNation.com Reasoning: Johnson proved in 2005 that he has the tools to be one of the best quarterbacks in the country, but he also proved last year that he might not mentally be over the injuries. If he can return to pre-injury form and continue to get help from running back Darnell Mack, Utah could be on the way to a very special season.
4.) UNM Donovan Porterie: Jr.
3006 passing yards, 15 touchdowns, 9 interceptions, 126.3 QB rating
Rated by Scout.com as a two star prospect coming out of high school, Porterie led the Mountain West Conference in pass efficiency(143.28) last season. He also became the first Lobo in nine years with back-to-back 300-yard passing games (vs. New Mexico State and Arizona).
BigPurpleNation.com Reasoning: Possibly the most underated quarterback in the conference, junior Donovan Porterie could be ready to make himself a household name in the Mountain West. Now that he has had the same offense and the same coaches for two years in a row, and with three years of experience, Porterie is primed for a breakout season.
Ranked as the No. 28 best freshman quarterback in the nation by Phil Steele's College Football Preview 2005, Karsten Sween enters his junior season having started 18 of the last 19 games for the Wyoming Cowboys.
>br> BigPurpleNation.com Reasoning: After an unexpected freshman season, Sween dropped off a bit in 2007. While he has had his inconsistencies, he did show the fans and coaching staff enough to get excited in 2008.
6.) Utah Courbin Louks: So
2 passing touchdowns, 138 yards rushing, 1 rushing touchdown, 188.1 QB rating
Ranked as the 14th best quarterback coming out of California in 2007, Louks saw limited action as a freshman playing behind Utah starter Brian Johnson. With Johnson hurt most of the spring, Louks saw a majority of the snaps with the first team.
>br> BigPurpleNation.com Reasoning: Even though he saw limited action last season, Louks showed glimpses of greatness. A special athlete who'll get more plays designed for him this year, Louks ran the third fastest forty-time on the team this spring. When Johnson leaves after this season, Louks will quickly climb the Mountain West Conference quarterback list.
A walk on in Las Vegas last preseason, the freshman quickly impressed the staff and made an immediate impact. He is the only Rebel quarterback to ever throw for at least 300 yards and rush for at least 100 in the same game.
>br> BigPurpleNation.com Reasoning: While Clyaton had good size and has proved to be extremely athletic, the sophmore has also proved to be careless with the ball. Before moving up the quarterback list in the Mountain West Conference, Clayton has to improve his decision making process and take better care of the ball.
8.) TCU Marcus Jackson: Jr
368 passing yards, 3 touchdowns, 1 interception, 107.0 QB rating
Marcus Jackson was thought to be the TCU starter going into last season until he was beat out by redshirt freshman Andy Dalton. While Jackson saw limited work, he did proved he can move the team with some key scoring drives coming off the bench last season.
>br> BigPurpleNation.com Reasoning: TCU can look at Jackson as their insurance this season. If the sophmore should get hurt or take a step back, Jackson is more then capable of starting. The simple fact is that TCU can win with both guys under center.
9.) CSU Billy Farris: Sr
2 appearances last season, 91 yards, 83.1 QB rating
Earning MVP honors in the 2003 Bayou Bowl for Louisiana, Farris is coming off a season ending elbow injury last year as the Colorado State's backup. The quarterback will get the opportunity this fall to start after three long seasons.
>br> BigPurpleNation.com Reasoning: Farros has been waiting of his turn to lead for a long time. Now that its here he needs to be ready to hit the ground running and win early. If not, CSU could look to the future at the expense of Farris. At 6-3 and 220 pound he has good size to go along with a live arm, but he needs all the reps he can get this preseason.
10.) Air Force Eric Herbort Jr.
No Stats Last Season
At 5-11, 180-pound junior Eric Herbort looks like the typical Air Force running quarterback, and he can turn out to be just that.
BigPurpleNation.com Reasoning: With no experience to rely on, Herbort will not have long leash, but is expected to be the starting quarterback after showing a strong and accurate arm last season.
Publisher note: These rankings are based solely on the opinion of BigPurpleNation.com and its publisher Josh Harvey!