Of all the position previews we've detailed here on Vanquish The Foe, the least ground-breaking stuff will come right here in the quarterbacks preview. Taysom Hill is back, and that's beyond exciting.
Still, there is a lot of young, promising talent behind Hill -- and, given his injury history, it's good to know what's behind him. Is this finally the group that restores Quarterback U in its rightful place?
Starter: Taysom Hill (Senior)
There's not a ton to say about Taysom Hill. BYU fans know Hill is a generational talent. While his passing game can improve, he showed he can be efficient in 2014 before his injury. But his speed and size running the football is something to behold, something we haven't really seen in college football before. He's a unique talent, and it will be fun to see how he wraps up his college career.
In total, Hill has played 24 games, throwing for 4,338 yards and 30 touchdowns while rushing for 2,140 yards and 22 more touchdowns. Accounting for 52 touchdowns in 24 games is something.
Let's get pumped up for Hill's senior campaign as he pumps iron in this promo for BYU tickets:
BYU Football Commercial 2015 - Home Opener
Take an exclusive look at this year's #BYUFOOTBALL commercial!! #GoCougsPosted by BYU Football on Saturday, August 22, 2015
Backup: Tanner Mangum (Freshman)
An Idahoan like Hill, Tanner Mangum finally suits up for BYU as an eligible player. You can correct me if I'm wrong, but I do believe Mangum used his redshirt prior to his mission.
In the way only BYU can do: Mangum was co-MVP of the prestigious Elite 11 quarterback competition in 2011, the other honoree being Jameis Winston. Winston, of course, was this year's no. 1 draft pick and will be the starter for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, while Mangum is still a college freshman. Missions, man.
Mangum is one of only two (Troy Hinds) BYU commits from the 2011-2015 signing classes to be rated four stars on his 247 Sports composite. Mangum was a fringe five-star recruit, coming in with a composite rating of 94.48. The only reason he didn't rise closer to five-star status is his early commitment to BYU which stemmed bigger offers to help drive up his ratings.
Mangum has a live arm and his talent is not questioned. What remains to be seen is how Mangum looks in live, Division-I reps, and how quickly he can return to form after his mission. BYU alum and six-year NFL cornerback Derwin Gray recently visited Provo to speak to the team, and had this to say about Mangum:
@tannermangum | I've seen a lot of great NFL arms in my time. You have rare arm talent. I'll be watching— Derwin L. Gray (@DerwinLGray) August 20, 2015
We're all a little traumatized by the tough situation that led to a flame-out of the last highly-heralded QB to suit up for BYU. But all signs are positive. Hopefully, the Cougars can get Mangum some live game reps in favorable situations to prepare him for a 2016 takeover.
Some have balked at the prospect of Mangum following Hill's run-heavy approach to quarterbacking, but Robert Anae had no problems calling a successful offense with Max Hall or, very recently, Christian Stewart.
Here are some Mangum highlights from high school:
Next up: Beau Hoge (Freshman)
Beau Hoge is a true freshman from Kentucky and son of ESPN NFL analyst Merril Hoge. Hoge was rated 82.58 on his 247 Sports composite rating, which is probably low due to low exposure -- Hoge did not play quarterback until his senior year of high school.
Hoge has some good dual threat capabilities and good "arm talent" (I didn't want to use that phrase, but I guess it describes what I want). Hoge might be a good candidate to run the scout team against certain opponents with his mobility. He is likely to redshirt and enjoy a year under the tutelage of Hill and Mangum. After Hill departs, I see Hoge as being a very good backup option for the Mangum era.
Just watch his highlights. Athleticism aside, his passing appears further along than many kids who spend their entire school career (middle and high school) as quarterbacks. The first play of the following reel was a SportsCenter Top 10 play. Watch Hoge's style and tell me he doesn't look like a right-handed Steve Young:
Koy Detmer, Jr. (Freshman)
Detmer -- the nephew of BYU Heisman winner Ty and son of former Colorado and NFL quarterback Koy -- signed at BYU as a preferred walk-on over a scholarship offer from Larry Coker and his hometown UTSA Roadrunners. Although undersized, Detmer definitely has the family arm and will spend time running the scout team at least some of the time.
Despite his walk-on status, Detmer was rated 83.33 on 247's composite.
I wanted to embed some highlights to show off that Detmer arm, but it appears Koy has now made his football highlights on his Hudl page private.
McCoy Hill (Sophomore)
Hill has been a non-factor this off-season since tearing knee ligaments during spring camp. The 6-foot-6, 235-pound QB redshirted in 2011. After a mission to Texas, the Jordan High (UT) product appeared in one game as a freshman last season, mopping up in the 64-0 win over Savannah State. Given his injury, I doubt McCoy Hill sees much action this season, even in practice.