Quarterback Chat

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    By Steve Weakland / Fresno State Athletics Communications

    ColburnCollege Football News recently ranked the WAC's top 10 quarterbacks and a couple things didn't seem to add up.

    While all of such rankings are subjective and beauty is always in the eye of the beholder, one still has to wonder how or why some the players ended up ranked where they did.

    Take Bulldog senior Ryan Colburn for instance, who was rated as the sixth-best quarterback in the WAC behind Kellen Moore (Boise State), Colin Kaepernick (Nevada), Diondre Borel (Utah State), Nathan Enderle (Idaho) and Bryant Moniz (Hawaii).

    Most Bulldog fans will have a hard time seeing Colburn below a couple guys on that list, especially Moniz.

    Certainly Pat Hill's reputation for developing quarterbacks is respectable. Of his four previous starting quarterbacks, three earned first-team All-WAC honors (Billy Volek, David Carr and Paul Pinegar), three were drafted in the NFL (Volek, Carr, Tom Brandstater) and are still playing in the league.

    In head to head competition, Colburn completed 12 of 14 passes for 120 yards with two touchdowns and no interceptions. Completing 86 percent of one's passes is hard enough to do against air let alone on the road against a traditionally good defensive team. Moniz did throw for more yards than Colburn with 283, but he threw two interceptions and the majority of his yards and both touchdowns came in the fourth quarter against Bulldog reserve defenders when Fresno State held a 42-3 lead. The most important stat was the final score: Fresno State 42, Hawaii 17.

    Colburn never faced Enderle because he was injured when the Dogs played at Idaho, however I don't think Enderle could have match what Colburn did against the Vandals. In a 31-21 victory, Colburn completed all 14 of his pass attempts, threw for one touchdown and kept possession of the ball for more than 36 minutes in the game.

    In head-to-head against Borel, Colburn won the battle leading the Dogs to a come-from-behind win over the Aggies with two second-half touchdowns. He threw for 256 yards and one touchdown in the game.

    For the season he threw for more touchdown passes than Borel and Moniz and only 19 quarterbacks in the country had a higher passing efficiency than Colburn, two of them being Moore and Enderle.

    What's more Colburn's stats from his junior season, his first as the full-time starter, were better than David Carr's when he was a first year junior starter.

    It was interesting to note that Bulldog back-up Derek Carr was ninth on the list, one spot ahead of San Jose State's Matt Faulkner, a former Bulldog passer. Colburn, Carr and Faulkner spent the spring of 2009 on the Bulldog roster fighting for the starting spot. Faulkner left to play at Mt. San Antonio College before signing with the rival Spartans.

    Steve Weakland is the Director of the Fresno State Athletics Communications staff.  He can be reached at sweaklan@csufresno.edu.

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    Funny because, Carr is listed on there also, and so is our former quarterback Faulkner. Its going to be interesting to see how Faulkner plays against us.

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