Oklahoma football: Landry Jones not in the Big 12 club
Let’s play a little Sesame Street. One of these players, isn’t like the other. One of these players just isn’t the same.
Here are the top five quarterbacks in passer ratings in college football: Geno Smith, David Ash, Aaron Murray, J.W. Walsh and Casey Pachall.
What the heck is Murray doing in there? He doesn’t play in the Big 12. The Georgia interloper is right in the middle of West Virginia’s Smith, Texas’ Ash, OSU’s Walsh and TCU’s Pachall.
Big 12 quarterbacks are all over the rest of the top of the rankings: Baylor’s Nick Florence is ninth, Texas Tech’s Seth Doege is 12th and Kansas State’s Collin Klein is 16th. And Nebraska’s Taylor Martinez, who quarterbacked in the Big 12 in 2010, is 11th.
OSU’s Wes Lunt, with only about 11/2 games under his belt, is 47th. Landry Jones is 62nd.
Quarterback rating, or passing efficiency, whatever you want to call the convoluted formulas used on the college and pro levels to measure quarterbacks, are overrated in their preciseness and in their historical relevancy. When Tony Romo has a higher career QB rating than Joe Montana, Otto Graham, Dan Marino, Troy Aikman, Bart Starr, Dan Fouts, John Elway and Johnny Unitas, you need to rethink the formula.
But QB rating is a solid way to group contemporary quarterbacks. In other words, don’t discern any difference between the nation’s No. 4 and the nation’s No. 7 quarterback. But No. 4 and No. 62? You betcha.
So there’s the dilemma facing the Sooners. In a league like this, your fifth-year senior quarterback, preseason Heisman contender, can’t be down in the 60s in quarterbacking rating.
Let’s go to a particular statistic. Let’s take yards per pass. Wyoming’s Brett Smith leads the nation at 10.8. Murray is second. Smith, Walsh, Florence and Pachall rank 3-6. Klein is 10th. Ash is 12th.
Landry Jones is 69th, with 7.2 yards per pass.
OK, let’s try completion percentage. Smith leads the nation at 83.4. Ash is third (78.0). Doege is 10th (71.4). Klein is 13th (70.0).n Lunt is 27th (68.0). Iowa State’s Steele Jantz, who is as good a pick as any for nation’s worst quarterback, is 33rd (66.9). Walsh is 36th (66.7). Pachall is 41st (66.0). Florence is 56th (63.7).
Landry Jones is 58th (63.6).
Thus the OU dilemma. The Sooners play in a quarterback league. In a league where even Texas figures out how to get its shoddy QB play up to speed, the Sooners have gotten below-standard quarterback play from Landry.
And that has got to change.
“What you’ve got to be careful of, the worst thing a quarterback can do is press,” Bob Stoops said. “Try to force the issue, as opposed to letting it come to you. The old adage, take what they give you.”
Stoops said Jones’ travails this season – which really center on the Kansas State game, where Landry was awful – is “just confidence and being comfortable, sitting in there throwing the football.”
Stoops said the Sooners, during their bye week, went first team offense vs. first team defense more than usual. “We blitz,” Stoops said. “Better guys coming in there. Short of hitting him. We’re not going to do that.”
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