This upcoming college football season will surely be one dominated by the quarterback. With multiple big-time transfers and an exciting freshman class coming in, the stage is set for a huge year of high-end quarterback play.
The ACC is no exception, and there are three quarterbacks to keep an eye on in 2019.
As a redshirt sophomore, DeVito has not had a lot of experience as a Division 1 quarterback, but that is no reason to doubt his talents. Last season, DeVito played in seven games, but only got meaningful opportunities in three of them. His best performance came in the victory over UNC, in which he completed 11 of his 19 passes for 181 yards, three touchdowns and an interception.
Coming out of Don Bosco Prep in New Jersey, DeVito was a four-star recruit and was the 13th best pro-style quarterback in his class. Sitting behind Eric Dungey for a year also gave DeVito some time to mature and get stronger physically while watching and learning from a tremendous role model.
Despite the fact that no one has seen much of DeVito, hopes are still high at Syracuse. Dino Babers has shown that he can develop quarterback talent, and DeVito is certainly one of the most naturally gifted players in the conference. Whether or not that will translate into victories is uncertain, but the Orange are without a doubt a dark horse to keep an eye on next season.
Tate Martell is an enigma. He is the charismatic prototype for the next wave of quarterbacks, i.e. Baker Mayfield. However, the redshirt sophomore transfer to Miami was unable to lock down a starting spot at Ohio State and spent last season watching Dwayne Haskins break the single-season B1G passing touchdown record.
Miami should be a different animal though. They have an exciting, young coach in Manny Diaz, who will have the defense ready to go. The offense sputtered last year under a combined effort by Malik Rosier and N’Kosi Perry, but with former head coach Mark Richt gone, Diaz has vowed to shake up the offensive system to conform to his player’s talents, rather than trying to fit square pegs into round holes.
Miami’s defense and skill position players are talented enough to fight for the conference title, but quarterback is the last missing piece they need to be successful. Early reports out of Miami say that Martell has struggled with the new offense, but the Hurricanes will need him to turn it around quickly, considering their highly anticipated matchup against Florida is only a month away.
This one was obvious. Lawrence was one of the best freshman quarterbacks in recent memory last season, and he showed no signs of slowing down against Alabama in the national title game.
After throwing for over 3200 yards and 30 touchdowns last season, it feels like Lawrence is set up for a relatively disappointing year. He just can’t possibly get any better can he? The scary thing is, he probably can.
Being gifted with the body and athleticism that Lawrence has, time and repetitions are the missing pieces in his progression. He will get more of both this season and has a chance to be a generational talent at his position. With only a Heisman missing from his trophy cabinet, Lawrence is one of the frontrunners to navigate this year’s gauntlet of talented quarterbacks to be the one holding college sports’ most famous award in New York next January.