Will SEC pass defenses rise again in 2014?

One reason to think there might be grounds for seeing a defensive resurgence in the conference next season is because of turnover at the quarterback position.  John Pennington has a nice breakdown, comparing the situations going into last season and next season, here.  This is how he describes the new crop:

School   Top 2013 QB Returning   Total Off. 2013   Yds/Gm 2013   Our View of Situation
  Ole Miss   B. Wallace   3701   284.7   Good, Just needs to keep cutting down on turnovers
  Auburn   N. Marshall   3044   234.2   Best, But Marshall still needs to improve as a passer
  Miss. State   D. Prescott   2769   251.7   Good, Prescott was a solid leader in ’12 when healthy
  Arkansas   B. Allen   1581   143.7   Worst, Injuries were an issue, but Allen needs work
  Kentucky   J. Whitlow   1492   124.3   Bad, Likely an open race as Whitlow’s health always a ?
  Missouri   M. Mauk   1300   100.0   Good, Mauk showed he’s a solid heir to the job
  Tennessee   J. Worley   1295   161.8   Bad, An open race once between up to 4 guys
  Georgia   H. Mason   960   240.0   Good, Mason wasn’t great, but he should be ready for ’14
  Vanderbilt   P. Robinette   856   85.6   Bad, If Franklin walks out how will new coach see/use him?
  S. Carolina   D. Thompson   810   101.2   Good, But not great… he’s not been a Shaw clone to date
  Florida   J. Driskel   515   171.6   Bad, New OC and likely an open competition
  Texas A&M   M. Joeckel   293   73.2   Good, Whoever gets the nod should excel in Sumlin’s system
  Alabama   B. Sims   228   28.5   Good, The people around Bama’s QB will help a lot
  LSU   A. Jennings   199   22.1   Good, Beat Arkansas and Iowa and run game will help

Yeah, there’s a drop there from Manziel, Murray, McCarron, Shaw, etc.  When arguably the top returner at the position “still needs to improve as a passer”, I’d say you’re looking at a potential situation where secondary play should take a step up.

Maybe Lakatos’ successor can take advantage of that.

9 Comments

Filed under SEC Football

9 responses to “Will SEC pass defenses rise again in 2014?

  1. rampdawg

    If Bauta keeps working on his reads and checkdowns, and progresses in the off season and spring. With his running ability and Masons somewhat questionable arm strength. He may at some point next year, take the position. You have to admit, Masons floating completion to the sideline in the bowl game was an “OH SHIT” moment. That I think has left a ? in the minds of everyone in Dawgnation.

  2. Bright Idea

    Mauk scares me. He was better than James Franklin (not the Penn St. coach).

    • Macallanlover

      I also think Mauk will keep Mizzou competitive in the East next year and believe he will be better than Franklin before mid-season.

      Mason lost my “auto” vote based on what I saw from him in JAX. Not saying he cannot be good but I really want to see an open competition for the QB job in the Spring. The starting QB position was his to lose and I feel he brought everyone back into the race. If I am Bobo, Mason will have to be demonstrably better than the others because he is “one and done” for UGA. If he isn’t a huge difference maker at this point, I would prefer to play the next best QB and let him develop. Starting an average 5th year QB and then starting from scratch again for 2015 has no appeal to me.

      • sniffer

        I agree with all you said. I wonder how loyal Richt will be to his patient, long suffering, senior player? Richt is loyal, to a fault. I’m afraid Mason will have to supremely fail for a change to happen.

        • merk

          Took an injury to get Stafford in over Joe T., but an injury also kept Murray from coming in for Joe Cox. Who knows what will happen.

    • Russ

      Agree completely. I was mystified watching the Cotton Bowl every time Pinkel would put Franklin back into the game. They won that in spite of Franklin and Pinkel.

  3. Will Trane

    Pass defense. Would like to see Dawgs give a call to Derek Jones at Duke for DB and ST coach. Grad of Ole Miss and coached one of the top D backs in ACC and D1.2013 was the year of SEC QB who could throws. Not the year to play them if you were oft-injured, freshman, or 1st year starter.

  4. IveyLeaguer

    Nick Marshall might the best returner in terms of overall production. But he is only good in Malzahn’s system. He couldn’t run Georgia’s offense, or the systems at Alabama, Florida, South Carolina and any number of other places.
    ~~~