On Monday, ESPN’s ACC Blog asked who is the conference’s “next Deshaun Watson?”
While Louisville’s Lamar Jackson already took home a Heisman Trophy last year, and David Hale goes with Florida State’s Deondre Francois, he also throws out another reasonable pick:
Syracuse Orange QB Eric Dungey.
Hale’s reasoning is simple, and entirely predicated on Dungey staying healthy and Dino Babers’s system being Dino Babers’s system. When put that simply, it’s not really farfetched at all, from a numbers perspective (long shot on the win totals, unfortunately).
In two seasons and change, the Clemson quarterback compiled 10,163 passing yards and 90 passing touchdowns, Dungey’s two abbreviated seasons give him 3,977 passing yards and 26 passing touchdowns.
Soooo, the likelihood of him equaling Watson’s output in the same amount of time is virtually nonexistent. But sure, Dungey could potentially catch up with two full seasons to end his Orange career. Even a relatively modest output (for this offense) of 20 touchdowns per season still has him trailing through the air -- though we’d probably want to add Dungey’s high ground totals.
As for passing yards, Dungey would need about 3,000 per season, which is far more attainable. In 2016, he had 2,679 in what was effectively eight games.
The numbers sound nice, of course. But the key for Dungey (or anyone) becoming the “next” Watson truly does rely on the win total. Watson quarterbacked Clemson to its first championship in well over three decades — against Alabama, no less. Starting for the Tigers the past two years, he only lost twice.
Watson may not have won the Heisman, but he was dynamic, thrilling, smart and far more talented than most of the opponents on the field.
Is Dungey, or anyone, THAT good in the ACC right now? I’m tempted to say no, but that’s not for a lack of talent in the conference. Watson was just a special player, and one whose skill and output level may have only one equal (Jackson) in the conference he leaves behind.
But what do you think? Is Dungey up for the job? Are some of you sitting here making predictions about Tommy DeVito to yourselves already? Share all rational and irrational conjecture below.