Most college football fans know Trevone Boykin, the record-setting dual-threat Heisman Trophy hopeful for third-ranked TCU.
So this is an introduction to the other Big 12 quarterbacks, including four players who rank ahead of Boykin in the conference in total offense and passing.
OK, it’s only two games into the season and Boykin barely played into the second half of a blowout victory last week. But Patrick Mahomes, Seth Russell, Skyler Howard and Mason Rudolph are in the same position as Boykin was this time a year ago, before he almost got the Horned Frogs into the first College Football Playoff and finished fourth in the Heisman Trophy voting.
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That quartet went into the season as full-time starters – their team’s No. 1 – for the first time.
A look at them and other Big 12 quarterbacks:
-Mahomes is the latest in a long line of big-passing quarterbacks at Texas Tech. He started four games as a freshman last season, and won the job this year over Davis Webb, who also started multiple games in 2014. Mahomes is the Big 12’s leading passer at 393 yards per game, with eight touchdowns and only one interception. He has also run for two scores. He set a Big 12 freshman record with 598 yards against Baylor last year, along with six TDs in that game.
-Russell had to wait his turn to run fifth-ranked Baylor’s big-play offense. In his only start before this season, he threw for 438 yards and five touchdowns – in only one half filling in for injured Bryce Petty. With Petty now with the New York Jets, Russell has an FBS-best nine TDs this season, but also five turnovers (four interceptions, one lost fumble). The Bears’ 785 total yards last week was the second-highest total in school history.
-Statistically, West Virginia junior Skyler Howard is the conference’s most efficient passer (622 yards with five touchdowns and no interceptions). Coach Dana Holgorsen said Howard, a Texas high school player who went to Riverside City College, is playing with confidence and wanting to prove people wrong. ”He just wasn’t a recruited kid, always been told too slow, too short, and not strong enough to be able to play the game at this level,” Holgorsen said. Howard started the Liberty Bowl for injured Clint Trickett, throwing for 346 yards passing and three TDs in a 45-37 loss to Texas A&M.
-Mason Rudolph became Oklahoma State’s starter the final three games last season as a freshman. After a loss at Baylor, Rudolph led a comeback victory at Oklahoma and then threw for 299 yards and two TDs against Washington to win the Cactus Bowl. In his first home game for the Cowboys on Saturday, he threw for 401 yards with 23 completions (to 11 receivers) in a 32-8 win over Central Arkansas.
-Former Texas Tech transfer Baker Mayfield is now at Oklahoma and earned the No. 1 job over returning starter Trevor Knight. Mayfield started seven games for the Red Raiders a freshman before having to sit out a season. Mayfield has thrown for six TDs and is tied with Boykin for fifth in the Big 12 with 314.5 total yards per game.
-Kansas State junior Joe Hubener hadn’t started a game at quarterback since junior high before last week’s win at Texas-San Antonio. He was a receiver and defensive back in high school before walking on at Kansas State. Jesse Ertz emerged from the quarterback competition as the starter, but hurt his knee on his first play.
-After starting five games for Kansas State last season, Montell Cozart was benched for Michael Cummings, who likely would have started this season had he not torn up his knee in the spring game. Cozart could get replaced again after an open date since junior college transfer Deondre Ford finished the last game.
-Iowa State’s Sam Richardson is the only senior starting quarterback in the league other than Boykin. The only freshman is redshirt Jerrod Heard, who threw two long TDs and ran for 96 yards in his first career start last Saturday in a win over Rice.
AP Sports Writers Dave Skretta, Cliff Brunt and John Raby, and AP Writer Betsy Blaney contributed to this report.
This version corrects to West Virginia losing Liberty Bowl.