Examining which JUCO QBs will make the biggest impact this fall
Finding or developing a quarterback is no easy task for any college football coach. This position is one of the hardest to evaluate in high school, and as evidenced by the annual wave of departures, quarterbacks often transfer early in their career in search of more playing time. While developing a quarterback through the high school ranks is the preferred option for coaches, the junior college level presents quick-fix options and players who were often overlooked in the recruiting process. This level always produces a handful of impact transfers each year, and the quarterback position has a handful of intriguing names back on the scene in 2020. Chance Nolan at Oregon State, Danny Clark and Jeremy Moussa at Vanderbilt and Parker McNeil at Troy are just a few of the junior college quarterbacks who could make make an impact in 2020.
Which junior college quarterbacks will make the biggest impact in 2020? Here’s a look at 11 who could make an impact this fall:
College Football's Top 11 Impact JUCO Transfer QBs for 2020
Stephon Brown, TCU
TCU is set with Max Duggan as its starting quarterback for 2020. However, Brown could compete for the backup job. The North Carolina native arrives in Fort Worth after spending the 2019 season at Independence Community College. The former Appalachian State quarterback played in 10 contests for the Pirates, throwing for 1,430 yards and 16 touchdowns to six picks. He also added 546 more yards and seven scores on the ground.
Ethan Bullock, Oklahoma State
Oklahoma State is set with Spencer Sanders as its starting quarterback, but coach Mike Gundy needed to shore up the depth behind him with Dru Brown out of eligibility. Bullock arrives in Stillwater after spending two years at the City College of San Francisco. The Florida native threw for 1,468 yards and 15 touchdowns nine games in the 2019 season. Bullock started his career at South Dakota State in 2017.
Danny Clark/ Jeremy Moussa, Vanderbilt
Vanderbilt’s quarterback room looks a lot different than it did last season, as four new signal-callers dot the roster for 2020. In addition to freshmen Ken Seals and Mike Wright, Clark and Moussa are slated to battle for the job. Clark originally started his career at Kentucky and transferred to Copiah-Lincoln Community College. In nine games during the 2019 season, Clark threw for 2,166 yards and 18 touchdowns to five picks. Moussa – a native of California – spent the 2019 season at San Bernardino Valley College after beginning his career at Hawaii. Moussa threw for 37 touchdowns and 3,179 yards over 199 completions.
Jeremy Hunt, ULM
Replacing Caleb Evans won’t be easy for ULM in 2020. The former signal-caller ranked second in the Sun Belt by averaging 311.1 total yards a game last fall. Colby Suits attempted 19 passes as the backup to Evans last year and begins 2020 as the favorite to start. However, Hunt will get a chance to push for the job after starting 10 games at Trinity Valley Community College in 2019. The Illinois native threw for 2,474 yards and 20 touchdowns and added 179 yards and four scores on the ground. Hunt played in 10 games as a redshirt freshman at Central Missouri in 2018 and threw for 2,281 yards that fall.
Jonah Johnson, New Mexico State
With Josh Adkins transferring to UTSA, the starting quarterback job in Las Cruces is up for grabs. Johnson - a native of California – arrives at New Mexico State after playing at Fresno City College for two years. During his sophomore campaign, Johnson threw for 1,818 yards and 10 touchdowns and added 254 yards and six scores on the ground. Over 21 games at the JUCO level, Johnson accounted for 28 passing scores and completed 57.8 percent of his passes.
Parker McNeil, Troy
Troy coach Chip Lindsey has a wide-open battle on tap this fall to replace Kaleb Barker. McNeil joins with two years of eligibility to compete with Jacob Free (a former Vanderbilt signal-caller) and sophomore Gunnar Watson. McNeil was the National JUCO Athletic Association Offensive Player of the Year last fall, throwing for 3,150 yards and 27 touchdowns over 11 games for Navarro College. He also connected on 61.8 percent of his throws and averaged 286.4 passing yards a contest.
Kyle Lindquist, UMass
Second-year coach Walt Bell hopes to tap into his 2020 recruiting class for instant help after UMass averaged 19.8 points a game last fall. Lindquist arrives in Amherst after spending the 2019 season at Butte College. Last season, Lindquist earned NorCal Offensive MVP honors after throwing for 2,552 yards and 26 touchdowns. He will compete with Andrew Brito for the starting nod this fall.
Chance Lovertich, South Alabama
Desmond Trotter is the frontrunner to start under center for South Alabama in 2020, but coach Steve Campbell added competition with Lovertich joining the squad this fall. After playing in eight games in 2018, Lovertich connected on 64.5 percent of his throws for 2,794 yards and 24 touchdowns as a sophomore at Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College in ’19.
Chance Nolan, Oregon State
Nolan is the highest-rated JUCO quarterback by the 247Sports Composite. The former MTSU signal-caller arrives in Corvallis with three years of eligibility after spending the 2019 campaign at Saddleback College. Nolan posted huge numbers at the JUCO level last fall, throwing for 3,315 yards and 38 touchdowns and rushing for 1,069 yards and six scores. He will compete with Tristan Gebbia for the starting nod in fall practice.
TJ McMahon, Rice
McMahon started his career as a walk-on at Mississippi State but left after one season to play at Cerritos College. The California native thrived in one year at the JUCO level, completing 65.8 percent (a school record) of his passes for 2,667 yards and 24 touchdowns. He also tossed only five picks over 295 attempts. McMahon will compete with TCU transfer Mike Collins for the starting nod.
(Top photo courtesy of @chance_nolan)