Projecting which quarterbacks will start for all 133 college football teams for the 2023 season.
College football's 2023 season is still months away, but it's never too early to start looking at quarterbacks and how all 133 teams stack up at the position. With this being the most important position on the field, how a team develops, recruits or attracts transfers can have a significant impact on a team's outlook for the upcoming year. Since the rule change allowing immediate eligibility as a transfer, along with the creation of the portal, major movement in the quarterback ranks has been a hallmark of the offseason. Instead of waiting for the starter to graduate or depart to the NFL and take over after learning a couple of years in the system, quarterbacks can transfer to find a place to play right away.
Just how many quarterbacks could be transfers in 2023? According to our research and Athlon Sports' own projections, 54 percent of college football's starting quarterbacks next year are likely to be transfers. A higher percentage (43 of 69 counting Notre Dame) of Power 5 programs are slated to start a transfer next fall. That percentage (63.2) drops to 44.3 (27 of 61) in the Group of 5 ranks. Three of the four FBS Independents could start a transfer in '23. Overall, 72 of the 133 projected starting quarterbacks for next season could potentially be a transfer.
With spring practice looming, along with a second portal opening, these numbers could look different by August.
Which quarterbacks are expected to start in 2023? And how will each conference be impacted by transfers next year? Athlon Sports dives into the numbers and names for each conference:
College Football Starting Quarterback Data for 2023
How many transfers could start for all 133 teams in 2023?
How many transfers could start by conference in 2023?
*The Pac-12 has the highest number of potential transfers as starters of any conference for 2023 (10).
*That number could climb to 11 if touted freshman Dante Moore doesn't win the job at UCLA.
*The Pac-12 should have a couple of the nation's best quarterbacks - Caleb Williams, Bo Nix, Michael Penix Jr. and Cameron Rising - returning for 2023.
*An interesting debate is set to unfold at this position for 2023. Which quarterback should get the nod as the preseason first-team All-SEC pick? Is it Arkansas' KJ Jefferson, LSU's Jayden Daniels, or Mississippi State's Will Rogers? Or is it potentially a wild card like Tennessee's Joe Milton or Alabama's Ty Simpson?
*Florida landed Wisconsin's Graham Mertz from the portal but could be a team that gets involved after spring movement begins to land another option.
*Ole Miss is slated to have three transfers - Spencer Sanders, Jaxson Dart and Walker Howard - vying for the No. 1 spot in 2023.
*Three of the Group of 5's top quarterbacks reside in the American next fall. Tulane's Michael Pratt returns after guiding coach Willie Fritz's team to a Cotton Bowl victory over USC, but he will have competition from UTSA's Frank Harris for first-team All-AAC honors. Memphis' Seth Henigan also returns after throwing for 47 touchdowns in the last two years.
*Rice is the fourth stop in JT Daniels' career. He originally started at USC and transferred to Georgia after two seasons with the Trojans. Daniels then spent two years with the Bulldogs before for one season at West Virginia.
*Conference USA has the fewest transfers (three) projected to start in 2023.
*Ball State is the fourth stop in Layne Hatcher's career. After starting at Alabama, Hatcher later spent time at Arkansas State and Texas State.
*The Mountain West could have three intra-conference transfers - Andrew Peasley (Utah State to Wyoming), Chevan Cordeiro (Hawaii to San Jose State), and Clay Millen (Nevada to Colorado State) start in 2023.
*Perhaps the most interesting aspect of the Sun Belt's 2023 quarterback outlook is who didn't transfer: Coastal Carolina's Grayson McCall. After entering the portal, McCall later opted to return to play for new coach Tim Beck.
*Three Sun Belt programs - Southern Miss, Georgia Southern and James Madison - inked at least two transfers at quarterback this offseason.
Podcast: Debating the Way-Too-Early Preseason College Football Top 25 for 2023
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