LSU quarterback Joe Burrow capped a stellar season with a National Championship. Does Florida football have the next great quarterback?
For the next who-knows-how-many weeks, every college football quarterback is going to be compared to LSU quarterback Joe Burrow … including Florida football quarterback Kyle Trask.
The biggest question will be can [insert quarterback here] be the next Joe Burrow?
It’s tough to say, as we can only use what we know of the 2019 season as a basis of comparison.
However, there are a lot of things that stand out for Florida football’s Trask that could see him as the next big quarterback.
Trask will come into the 2020 season with a season’s worth of experience, an experienced offensive line and a solid group of returning skill players … something Burrow had coming into this season.
In some instances, Trask actually has an easier path to college football immortality than Burrow. Burrow started at LSU cold. He had no experience returning with the Tigers and had to really learn on the fly.
Trask, on the other hand, returns with 12 games as a starter under his belt. In that time, Trask threw for 2,941 yards, 25 touchdowns and just seven interceptions on 237-for-354 passing.
For those looking at the math, that’s a completion rate of 66.9%.
He was second to Burrow in completion percentage and yards thrown. He had just 118 inaccurate passes — fewer than the 131 of Burrow.
Trask was also third in the SEC in depth adjusted accuracy with 50.9%. The league average was 44.8% and Trask was behind Burrow and Alabama quarterback Tua Tagovailoa — neither of whom are back next season.
Because he played in the SEC, Trask benefitted from playing six of the top 30 defenses nationally and threw for 1,502 yards and 11 touchdowns to just three interceptions against them.
Under pressure, Trask was just behind Burrow with a 66.67 completion percentage.
Trask will also have the benefit of more experience on the offensive line.
Let’s not kid ourselves, early on in the 2019 season, the Florida football offensive line was a disaster, but both Feleipe Franks and Trask were able to make plays and work around the issues of a lackluster running game.
For the 2020 season, Florida football will have lost just one — center Nick Buchanan — to graduation while keeping Brett Heggie, Richard Gouraige and a host of much younger linemen who got solid experience up front.
Perhaps the biggest challenge will be at wide receiver. Florida football loses Van Jefferson, Freddie Swain, Tyrie Cleveland and Josh Hammond — perhaps one of the best wide receiving corps in Florida football history.
But consider who’s coming back.
Tight end Kyle Pitts, who was the second-leading receiver for the Gators with his 649 yards and five touchdowns, is back. Trevon Grimes recently announced he was returning for another season. Grimes had 491 yards — fourth on the team — and three touchdowns.
Toney is also presumably back next season and we have seen his playmaking ability. Toss in a host of returning younger players and the cupboard is hardly bare.
It’s not to say the expectation is that Trask hands in a season like Burrow next year, but it is safe to say Florida football is in capable hands for the 2020 season.