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February 21, 2010

Who should be the preseason All-America QB?

At the College Football Roundtable each week, we ask each member of the coverage staff for his opinion about a topic in the sport.

Spring practices are just beginning across the nation, but let's look ahead to the fall -- as in, who will be the quarterback on the preseason All-America team?

Olin Buchanan's answer:
Some may dismiss players on teams that are not in the Big Six conferences, but that would be a mistake. To me, the obvious choice as preseason All-American quarterback is Houston senior Case Keenum. He threw for 5,671 yards and 44 touchdowns last season. He had 1,000 more passing yards than any other quarterback. His gaudy stats were not just a byproduct of playing weak defenses in Conference USA. He passed for 366 yards against Oklahoma State and 435 against Texas Tech. That's more than Texas' Colt McCoy did against those teams. Keenum also threw for 434 yards against Mississippi State. That's more than three times the total that Florida's Tim Tebow managed against the Bulldogs. Detractors would point out Keenum threw six interceptions in a postseason loss to Air Force. No argument: That was a disaster. Still, one meltdown doesn't change what Keenum did the rest of the season. There is no reason to think he won't have another spectacular season in 2010.

Tom Dienhart's answer:
There are several good options, but I think it should be Houston's Case Keenum. No quarterback passed for more yards last season, as Keenum threw for 5,671 while completing 70.3 percent of his passes. He also paced the nation with 44 touchdown passes. The topper: Keenum is a winner, leading his team to the C-USA title game last season and also to victories over Big Six conference teams Oklahoma State, Texas Tech and Mississippi State.

David Fox's answer:
It's Boise State Kellen Moore, no question. Moore is 26-1 as a starter in two seasons at Boise, and that loss was by one point against TCU in the 2008 Poinsettia Bowl. I don't know why my colleagues wouldn't pick Moore unless they don't like the thought of a preseason All-America quarterback from the WAC. A junior, Moore should challenge Colt McCoy's career wins record for a starting quarterback. Take a look at Moore's improvement from his redshirt freshman season to his sophomore season. He threw 14 more touchdowns and seven fewer interceptions. The level of competition might be weak, but Moore will have opportunities to prove himself early in the season against Virginia Tech and Oregon State.

Mike Huguenin's answer:
Houston's Case Keenum is my pick. He threw for 5,671 yards and 44 touchdowns last season, and I think a 6,000-yard season -- which would be a single-season record -- is a legit goal this season. He is a perfect fit for the Cougars' offense, and he will have all his key skill-position teammates back this fall. That Houston is mediocre, at best, on defense actually could help Keenum pile up the stats. The Cougars are going to have to win some shootouts this fall. Overall, this is a rather underwhelming group of returning quarterbacks nationally, and I think Keenum is the best of the bunch.

Steve Megargee's answer:
I'd probably go with Boise State's Kellen Moore. He ranked second in the nation in passing efficiency and threw 39 touchdown passes with only three interceptions for a team that went undefeated in 2009 and could open the 2010 season in the top five. Moore would be a no-brainer pick as an All-America quarterback and Heisman contender if he played in a major conference. Although his stats undoubtedly got a bit of a boost from playing in the WAC instead of a big-time conference, Moore still had the best year of any of the returning quarterbacks. You also could make a case for Houston's Case Keenum, who led the nation with 5,671 passing yards last season. But he also threw nine interceptions in his final two games of the season. Moore had a better overall season and should be better than Keenum again this season.

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