The Davey O’Brien Award (best quarterback) watch list was released this past Wednesday, and some Illini faithful might be raising an eyebrow at the fact that sophomore quarterback Wes Lunt was left off the list. Yes, Lunt might be new in town, but he’s built for the Bill Cubit system, right?
Last season during Cubit’s first season in Champaign, Illinois had the second highest passing offense in the Big Ten (behind only Indiana) and was 34th nationally. Cubit took Nathan Scheelhaase and improved the Illini offense by 1,426 total yards, 118.9 yards per game, and twelve touchdowns. He was able to do that with a quarterback that wasn’t “ideal” for his offensive system too.
So why isn’t Wes Lunt on the Davey O’Brien Award watch list?
Simple answer: Lunt hasn’t played in a football game since the 2012 season, and that season was full of injury.
During his freshman season at Oklahoma State, Lunt played in only five games where he threw for 1,108 yards, six touchdowns, seven interceptions, and had a QB rating of 137.3.
Nationally, many are unsure about Wes Lunt because of his past injuries, and that he didn’t play last season. However, there are seven sophomore quarterbacks on the O’Brien watch list.
These sophomores include: Jared Goff (Cal), Christian Hackenberg (Penn State), Trevor Knight (Oklahoma), John O’Korn (Houston), P.J. Walker (Temple), Davis Webb (Texas Tech), and last year’s award winner Jameis Winston (Florida State).
Only three of these seven sophomore QBs threw for over 3,000 yards in 2013. Wes Lunt could throw for over 3,000 yards in his sleep in the Bill Cubit system.
There’s no doubt that many nationally are down on the Illinois sophomore entering the 2014 season. However, Lunt should take this as “bulletin board material” for the upcoming season.
Illini Nation is positive that Wes Lunt can thrive in the Bill Cubit system, and it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Lunt make the O’Brien watch lit at some point during the season.
With Lunt at quarterback and slightly improved defense, Illinois could be bowl bound in 2014.
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