When predicting a college football national champion, bet on the quarterback

A good argument can be made that only four, and maybe five or six college football teams have a quarterback to win a national championship.
John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

For the sake of summer conjecture let's say that winning a college football national championship is more dependent on quarterback play than any other position. Although Michigan won it all last season, with a good but not great quarterback in JJ McCarthy, that has not been the recent norm.

Mac Jones in 2020 and Stetson Bennett in 2021 and 2022 may not have been flashy athletes, but they were game-changers, leaders, and winners.

Is there a 2024 college football team, that can win the national championship with good but not great quarterback play? Who knows if they will be very good or great, but Georgia can win it with Carson Beck and Texas can win it with Quinn Ewers. Maybe Oregon can with Dillon Gabriel. Colorado has an extraordinarily gifted quarterback in Shedeur Sanders but Deon's team is not a championship contender.

What about the Alabama Crimson Tide and Jalen Milroe. Alabama football fans are enthusiastic about how Milroe will perform in Kalen DeBoer's offense. Despite frequent bad snaps and an offensive line that allowed too many pressures, Milroe's 2023 performance might qualify him as college football's most dynamic, returning quarterback. He must learn a new offense, but among the top teams, Milroe is one of the most experienced QBs.

Michael Penix Jr. was tremendous last season, running DeBoer's Washington offense. Penix and Milroe are different players, both with considerable skills, but without question, Milroe is far more explosive.

Forerm Alabama football QB, Greg McElroy recently named his top 10 quarterbacks for the 2024 season. GMac has Beck at the top, followed by Ewers, Sanders, Gabriel, and Jalen Milroe at No. 5. His others in the top 10 are Utah's Cam Rising, Miami's Cam Ward, Arizona's Noah Fifita, Ole Miss Rebel Jaxson Dart, and Kansas Jayhawk, Jalon Daniels.

ESPN's David Hale ranked all the 134 QB situations. His perspectives are interesting. No link is provided because the long piece, heavy on detail is only available to subscribers. I can say Hale only put four teams in the top tier of QB situations, and one of them is the Alabama Crimson Tide.

Jalen Milroe is the guy for DeBoer and Alabama, but it is worthwhile to remember the new staff has given rave reviews to Ty Simpson. Not only can Alabama persevere if Milroe becomes injured, but Simpson's then backup, Dylan Lonergan has also received accolades from the previous and current Alabama football staff.

The Alabama Crimson Tide has a great quarterback situation. And yes, it is more than good enough to win a National Championship.

Next. Ranking Bama's 2024 Opposing QBs. Ranking Bama's 2024 Opposing QBs. dark