Originally posted on Football Nation  |  Last updated 9/12/13
Move over Johnny Manziel, the Pac-12 is the conference with the best quarterbacks. Jared Goff, quarterback for the California Golden Bears, is leading the nation in passing yardage, with Oregon State's Sean Mannion and Colorado's Connor Wood right behind him.Goff is leading the nation with 468 yards per game passing, Mannion is second with 397 ypg and Wood is fifth in the nation at 370 ypg.Johnny Manziel, last year's Heisman trophy winner, is only managing 249 ypg. Yards per game don't exactly tell the whole story about a team or quarterback, but it gives a good overall picture of how a quarterback and his team are playing, and the Pac-12 is gobbling up yards this season.The Pac-12 has five quarterbacks in the top 25. Besides Goff, Mannion, and Wood there is Utah's Travis Wilson with 283 ypg (good for 20th) and Washington State's Connor Halliday coming in at 21st with 280 ypg.They are also scoring points. The five quarterbacks have combined for 26 TD's (which includes 3 rushing) and have only thrown 11 interceptions.Despite all the throwing, their accuracy isn't suffering. Mannion's completion rate is an astounding 79% (68 of 86) and Colorado's Wood is completing 66% of his passes. The Pac-12's leader, Goff, is slightly lower but still has a healthy 63% completion rate. Utah's Wilson is at a 66% completion rate and WSU's Halliday is at 59%.Besides the top quarterbacks in passing yardage, there is Oregon's Marcus Mariota, who is special in his own way. Mariota has 118 ypg rushing to go along with his 217 ypg passing. He has scored 6 TD's (3 rush, 3 pass) and has no interceptions in his two games this year.Washington's Keith Price and Arizona State's Taylor Kelly are tearing it up also. Though both have only played one game, their stats are very similar and pretty good. Kelly completed 74% of his passes for 300 yards and 5 TD's with no interceptions and Price completed 74% of his passes for 324 yards, 2 TD's and 1 interception.UCLA's Brett Hundley put up some good numbers in his only game. Hundley was 22 of 33 (67%) for 274 yards, 2 TD's, and 0 INT's in a 58-20 win over Nevada.No other conference is even close to having this many quarterbacks with this many yards. The numbers are also translating into wins, with the Pac-12 overall sitting on a 16-4 record.It's hard to say where these quarterbacks will sit at the end of the season, and if they can keep it up. Some of the games have been against sub-par opponents, but all conferences are known to schedule easy this early in the year. If the Pac-12 can put up these numbers early in the year, the other conferences should be able to do it also.The amazing thing about the Pac-12 quarterbacks is nearly all of them are underclassmen. Only Washington's Price is a senior this season. All the others should be back next year.Look out defenses.
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