Outside of Scott Frost, McKenzie Milton was the biggest catalyst behind UCF’s “national championship” season, if you want to call it that. The Hawaii native finished in the top ten nationally in passing yards and touchdowns thrown. With much of his supporting cast returning, he’s primed for another great year.
The Wolpack held their own in a conference dominated by Clemson in large part thanks to Finley. The senior quarterback thew for over 3,500 yards and 17 touchdowns to lead NC State to a 9-4 record and the No. 23 spot in the final AP Top 25 poll of the 2017 season.
It’s hard to get much recognition when you’re in the Sun Belt Conference, but Justice Hansen has been doing his part regardless. The senior from Edmond, OK threw 305 completions for 3,967 yards and 37 touchdowns, all top ten in the nation a year ago. However, he’ll need to find a way to cut down on interceptions to lead the Wolfpack.
Northwestern took a huge step forward in establishing themselves as a legitimate threat in the Big Ten West division thanks in large part to Thorson. The senior quarterback led the team threw for 2844 yards and 15 touchdowns before suffering an ACL injury in the Music City Bowl against Kentucky. Expect him to make some noise in his final college season.
Jackson’s emergence in 2017 was perhaps the most surprising of all the players on this list. In his freshman year, Jackson threw for 2,991 yards and 20 touchdowns leading the Hokies to a 9-4 finish. Now with a year under his belt and academic issues out of the way, be ready for him to make a big impact in 2018.