ESPN's Andrea Adelson has chosen quarterback Syracuse Orange quarterback Eric Dungey as the fifth-most likely QB to throw for 3,000 yards in the ACC this season.
Coach Dino Babers has yet to name a starter, but here is betting Dungey emerges as the starter. We saw glimpses of his potential when he was healthy last season. If he can stay healthy and start all 12 games, he has a good shot at 3,000 based on history alone. In four years as a head coach (Eastern Illinois, Bowling Green), Babers has always had a 3,000-yard passer. In fact, his starting quarterbacks have averaged 4,248 yards.
So let's look at the likelihood of Dungey throwing for 3,000 yards.
On one hand, quarterbacks in a Babers-led offense have done really well at other schools. In Babers's first year at Eastern Illinois, junior QB Jimmy Garoppolo, who is now Tom Brady's backup with the Patriots, threw for 3,823 yards. He averaged 318.6 yards per game, improving his average from the year prior by 78.2 ypg or 1,179 total yards. In Babers's second year, Garoppolo threw for 5,050 yards.
At Bowling Green, quarterback James Knapke threw for 3,173 yards when Babers took the helm. Knapke started the season as a second-string QB but ended up starting after QB Matt Johnson got injured in the opener. Johnson then started for the Falcons last season and accumulated 4,946 yards.
So, at worst, every QB under Dino while he was a head coach claimed over 3,100 yards in a season.
But on the other hand, Syracuse is in the ACC. They have a ridiculously tough schedule. Babers hasn't coached in a Power Five conference yet, although he has led NFL-caliber talent. It will be an adjustment for Babers and also for his quarterbacks that have to learn his system.
Not to mention that Syracuse's QBs last year only combined for 1,884 yards. Of those, 1,298 yards came from Dungey in his eight appearances. He hasn't even technically been named starter yet, although he's definitely the front runner, and will need to remain healthy if he wants to sniff 3,000 yards. Not only that, but he'll be reliant on many other pieces of the puzzle on the field to come together, as football isn't just an individual game.
What do you think? Can Dungey and the Orange offense find a way to 3,000 yards right away?