College Football Quarterback Passing Props for the 2014 Season

David Lawrence

Saturday, August 16, 2014 8:02 AM GMT

Saturday, Aug. 16, 2014 8:02 AM GMT

The betting props that can be attached to a college football season are numerous. Four of them apply to starting quarterbacks. Let’s lay them out first, and they are all over-unders for passing yards that will be thrown during the regular season, not the bowls:

Braxton Miller, Ohio State Buckeyes

Over/Under: 2,095.5 passing yards

There are three basic points to keep in mind about Miller: First, he is primarily a running quarterback. Second, his team is a running team and will look to establish its running backs as much as it can, going to the passing game only when the running game is taken away. Since Ohio State is likely to control most of its opponents this season, Miller’s probably not going to get into too many situations where he needs to throw the ball. Third, Miller is not 100 percent healthy. He has been vulnerable to injuries and, with one hit in the wrong spot, could miss a lot of time. The more you think about his season in terms of passing yards, the more the under makes sense.

NCAA Football Pick: Under

 

Brett Hundley, UCLA Bruins

Over/Under: 3,019.5 passing yards

The UCLA Bruins know that they have a lot of talent and are expected to make the Pac-12 Championship Game this season as the Pac-12 South Division champions. One of the foremost reasons UCLA is expected to do really well is that it has a veteran quarterback with an extensive set of skills. Hundley has great pocket presence, and he is not just a scrambler, either. He can run a long way. His arm is decent, and if you think about it, Hundley probably came back to UCLA for another season specifically to develop his arm and make sure he could pull off NFL-level throws on a consistent basis. It’s this focus on his development as a passer which should make Hundley a very prolific throwing quarterback, more than a running back, in the coming season. UCLA might win a lot of games without needing to throw, but the better bet is that the Bruins will get roped into a number of high-scoring games and will have to be able to throw the ball more than 30 times a game in order to win against teams such as Arizona State that are all offense and no defense. Go with the over here.

NCAA Football Pick: Over

 

Marcus Mariota, Oregon Ducks

Over/Under: 3,249.5 passing yards

Hundley can run, but Mariota does run. Mariota looks to run before he passes. He has always been more comfortable in his career as a runner, not a passer. This is different from Hundley and a number of other quarterbacks with dual-threat capabilities in college football. Mariota will hit some big pass plays against weak teams, because Oregon’s offense has so many fleet and gifted playmakers on the outside at wide receiver and running back. However, most of Mariota’s big plays are likely to be long runs. Oregon loves to play with tempo, but this does not mean it likes to pass more than it runs. Mariota’s total is being set too high, because he’s going to gobble up a lot of rushing yards, trimming his passing production.

NCAA Football Pick: Under

 

Bryce Petty, Baylor Bears

Over/Under: 3,700.5 passing yards

The Baylor Bears have a fireworks show on the field in every game they play. That fireworks show is their own offense. Petty was amazingly and hugely productive last season, and now he gets to come back for another season with more experience and just enough motivation to want to do better. Baylor scored a lot, but was not at its best on offense, in a decisive Fiesta Bowl loss to the UCF Knights last January. That result should stick in Petty’s craw, and as a result, he should be fired up to play even better than he did last year. Baylor is going to throw the ball a ton when it wins, and it will throw the ball more than a ton if it gets caught in a shootout in which it trails for most of the game. The Big 12 loves its offensive pyrotechnics. It’s such a shootout-oriented conference that Petty will cover the number.

NCAA Football Pick: Over

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