NCAA QB rankings, Week 6: Washington State’s Luke Falk is ‘on fire’

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If a major upset happens after everyone has gone to bed on a Friday night, does it actually happen? Last week, Washington State slipped past No. 5 USC 30-27 for one of the biggest wins in program history. Due to its TV slot, though, it reached a relatively small audience, which means quarterback Luke Falk is still flying under the radar.

Borrowing language from our custom QB rankings system (QBL), Falk is “on fire,” with three consecutive notable performances after a slow start.

To give you an idea of how QBL works, here are the core factors:

  • Passing yardage
  • Rushing yardage/sack yardage
  • Total points (touchdowns + team conversions)
  • Interceptions
  • Efficiency (output vs. above-average number of attempts)
  • Win/loss
  • Strength of opponent
  • Era (output pitted against contemporary stats)

Note: This is not a ranking of the “best” quarterbacks with the tightest spirals or the quickest decision-making abilities or the fastest 40 times. It’s about “greatness,” that all-important factor that — until now — was unquantifiable.

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Here’s how the QB rankings shake out entering Week 6 (key below):

⬆️⬆️⬆️ Major mover
⬆️ Notable mover
🔥 Consecutive great games
❄️ Consecutive disappointing games
⛔️ Negative score in most recent game

1. Baker Mayfield, Oklahoma

Baker Mayfield-Oklahoma-QB rankings
Cooper Neill/Getty Images

A bye week helped Oklahoma catch its breath after a wild 49-41 win at Baylor. Some might look at the Sooners’ Week 6 matchup with Iowa State as another bye, but the Cyclones have been tough to beat this season. Mayfield has thrown for 300-plus yards and 3-plus touchdowns in both career games against ISU.

2. Mason Rudolph, Oklahoma State ⬆️

Mason Rudolph-Oklahoma State-QB rankings
John Weast/Getty Images

Oklahoma State may be teetering on the edge of two losses, but the Cowboys’ star quarterback continues to fill the stat sheet. Rudolph led OSU to a dramatic victory over Texas Tech on Saturday night, faking a handoff and then coasting into the end zone for the game-winning score. His leads the nation with 21 total touchdowns.

3. Kelly Bryant, Clemson ⬆️

Kelly Bryant-Clemson-QB rankings
Mike Comer/Getty Images

Bryant is not yet the total player Deshaun Watson was, but he’s arguably better at running with the football. Clemson also appears to be a more complete team than the one that won the national championship last season. Barring a wacky ACC upset, the Tigers appear to have a clear path to the conference title game (and the College Football Playoff).

4. Jalen Hurts, Alabama ⬆️

Jalen Hurts-Alabama-QB rankings
Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Outside of Lamar Jackson, no quarterback in the country runs the ball as well as Hurts does. He’s got strong vision, breakaway acceleration and a thick frame that makes him tough to bring down when defenders actually manage to get their hands on him. Does the sophomore still need to show more consistency in the passing game? Yes, but that won’t really matter unless ‘Bama faces an elite defense.

5. Josh Rosen, UCLA

Josh Rosen-UCLA-QB rankings
Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

Rosen and the Bruins picked up an important win against Colorado, but the quarterback uncharacteristically found it tough to get the ball into the end zone. At least one NFL analyst — CBS’ Chris Trapasso — looked past the iffy stat line and saw a remarkable performance; so much so that he moved Rosen past USC’s Sam Darnold in terms of Sunday potential.

6. Nick Fitzgerald, Mississippi State ❄️

Nick Fitzgerald-Mississippi State-QB rankings
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

It’s panic time for Fitzgerald and MSU. The Bulldogs offense was disastrous for a second straight week, and the passing game was clearly a weak link. When Mississippi State falls behind and can’t lean on its running game, it apparently has no way to recover. Thankfully, Dan Mullen’s squad is on bye this weekend.

7. Luke Falk, Washington State ⬆️⬆️⬆️ 🔥

Luke Falk-Washington State-QB rankings
William Mancebo/Getty Images

On Sept. 9, Falk failed to throw a touchdown pass in 34 attempts vs. Boise State before he was forced to the sideline with a concussion. BSU took a 21-point lead, and it appeared the national spotlight would once again leave Wazzu — and Falk — behind. But backup Tyler Hilinski helped the Cougars win in triple overtime, and now Falk has put together three consecutive outstanding performances. An upcoming two-game road trip (at Oregon, at Cal) will help decide if the senior is a legitimate Heisman Tropy contender.

RELATED: Luke Falk broke a Pac-12 record Friday

8. Lamar Jackson, Louisville

Lamar Jackson-Louisville-QB rankings
Michael Reaves/Getty Images

It’s time for the limelight again. Jackson was unsurprisingly excellent in yawners vs. Kent State and Murray State, and now his Louisville Cardinals must travel to N.C. State for a crucial ACC matchup on Thursday night. Three of the next four conference contests are on the road, including a showdown at Florida State on Oct. 21.

9. Josh Jackson, Virginia Tech

Josh Jackson-Virginia Tech-QB rankings
Rob Carr/Getty Images

Chalk up Virginia Tech as another ACC pretender. No one is on Clemson’s level right now, a fact made more apparent after Virginia Tech failed to give the Tigers much of a game on Saturday. Jackson was OK — one of his interceptions was the result of a dropped pass — but not special enough to give his team a real chance.

10. J.T. Barrett, Ohio State

J.T. Barrett-Ohio State-QB rankings
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Now that Army, UNLV and Rutgers have been dispatched, Ohio State turns its attention to two more weaklings: Maryland and Nebraska. Neither team is “bad,” per se, but no one should expect anything other than a pair of comfortable wins. That means more big numbers from Barrett, who has settled into a rhythm after a subpar performance vs. Oklahoma.

11. Riley Ferguson, Memphis (21.92)
12. Ryan Finley, N.C. State (21.34)
13. Sam Darnold, USC (20.42)
14. Kenny Hill, TCU (17.63)
15. Logan Woodside, Toledo (17.48)
16. Zach Smith, Baylor (17.06)
17. Nic Shimonek, Texas Tech (16.51)
18. Quinton Flowers, USF (16.32)
19. Malik Rosier, Miami (14.99) ⬆️
20. Nick Stevens, Colorado State (14.70) ⬆️
21. Mason Fine, North Texas (14.54) ⬆️ 🔥
22. Will Grier, West Virginia (14.05)
23. Nathan Stanley, Iowa (13.99)
24. Kyle Shurmur, Vanderbilt (13.87)
25. Manny Wilkins, Arizona State (13.69)

26. Kurt Benkert, Virginia (13.49) 🔥
27. McKenzie Milton, UCF (13.24) ⬆️
28. Shane Morris, Central Michigan (12.88) ⛔️ ❄️
29. Trace McSorley, Penn State (12.14)
30. Justin Herbert, Oregon (11.18)
31. Brandon Wimbush, Notre Dame (11.16) ⬆️
32. Andrew Ford, UMass (10.47) ⬆️
33. Eric Dungey, Syracuse (10.37)
34. John Wolford, Wake Forest (10.34)
35. Shea Patterson, Ole Miss (10.24) ⛔️ ❄️
36. Jacob Park, Iowa State (10.12)
37. TaQuon Marshall, Georgia Tech (9.79)
38. Chazz Surratt, North Carolina (9.55)
39. Ben Hicks, SMU (9.44)
40. Jake Fromm, Georgia (9.28)
41. Brian Lewerke, Michigan State (9.09)
42. Daniel Jones, Duke (8.82) ⛔️
43. Jake Browning, Washington (8.74)
44. Gus Ragland, Miami, Ohio (8.72)
45. Caleb Evans, UL-Monroe (8.69)
46. Zach Abey, Navy (8.45)
47. Dru Brown, Hawaii (8.20)
48. Jarrett Stidham, Auburn (8.03) ⬆️
49. Thomas Sirk, ECU (7.76)
50. Tanner Lee, Nebraska (7.59) ⬆️

51. Jon Wassink, Western Michigan (7.34)
52. Chase Litton, Marshall (7.05) ⬆️
53. Tyler Rogers, New Mexico State (6.98)
54. Brandon Dawkins, Arizona (6.96)
55. Clayton Thorson, Northwestern (6.52)
56. Kellen Mond, Texas A&M (6.32)
57. Tyrrell Pigrome, Maryland (6.01)
58. Chad President, Tulsa (5.83)
59. Hayden Moore, Cincinnati (5.73)
60. Ross Bowers, Cal (5.46)
61. Bryant Shirreffs, UConn (5.30) ⬆️
62. Nathan Rourke, Ohio (5.22)
63. Alex Hornibrook, Wisconsin (4.74)
64. Stephen Johnson, Kentucky (4.73)
65. Hasaan Klugh, Charlotte (4.72) ⬆️⬆️⬆️
66. Max Browne, Pittsburgh (4.52) ⬆️⬆️⬆️
67. Drew Lock, Missouri (4.48) ❄️
68. Jake Bentley, South Carolina (4.34)
69. David Blough, Purdue (4.22)
70. Max Bortenschlager, Maryland (4.06) ⬆️⬆️⬆️
71. K.J. Costello, Stanford (4.01)
72. Montell Cozart, Boise State (3.93)
73. Keller Chryst, Stanford (3.92)
74. Taylor Lamb, Appalachian State (3.67)
75. Christian Chapman, San Diego State (3.62)

76. Danny Etling, LSU (3.58)
77. Steven Montez, Colorado (3.39)
78. Brandon Silvers, Troy (3.35)
79. Austin Allen, Arkansas (3.25) ⬆️
80. Kwadra Griggs, Southern Miss (3.20)
81. J’mar Smith, Louisiana Tech (3.13)
82. Tyler Huntley, Utah (3.11)
83. Peyton Ramsey, Indiana (3.10)
84. A.J. Erdely, UAB (2.92)
85. Armani Rogers, UNLV (2.81) ⬆️
86. Justice Hansen, Arkansas State (2.73)
87. Jesse Ertz, Kansas State (2.64)
88. Kyle Allen, Houston (2.547)
89. Arion Worthman, Air Force (2.540) ⬆️
90. Kent Myers, Utah State (2.48)
91. Dalton Sturm, UTSA (2.47)
92. Feleipe Franks, Florida (2.45)
93. Tyree Jackson, Buffalo (2.40)
94. Josh Allen, Wyoming (2.31) ⬆️
95. Richard Lagow, Indiana (2.28)
96. Tua Tagovailoa, Alabama (2.19) ⬆️
97. Brogan Roback, Eastern Michigan (2.13)
98. Matt Linehan, Idaho (2.10)
99. Alex McGough, Florida International (2.05)
100. Tyler Hilinski, Washington State (1.99)

101. Quinten Dormady, Tennessee ⛔️
102. Mike White, Western Kentucky
103. Daniel Parr, Florida Atlantic
104. Thomas Woodson, Akron
105. Wilton Speight, Michigan
106. Ahmad Bradshaw, Army
107. Conor Rhoda, Minnesota ❄️
108. Damian Williams, Texas State
109. Elijah Sindelar, Purdue
110. Riley Neal, Ball State
111. Anthony Brown, Boston College
112. Sam Ehlinger, Texas
113. Peyton Bender, Kansas
114. Marcus McMaryion, Fresno State ⬆️
115. Jake Luton, Oregon State
116. Jordan Davis, Louisiana ❄️
117. Ty Gangi, Nevada
118. Kyle Postma, Houston ⬆️
119. Jonathan Banks, Tulane ⬆️
120. Chason Virgil, Fresno State
121. Daniel Santacaterina, Northern Illinois ⬆️
122. Brent Stockstill, MTSU
123. Shane Buechele, Texas ⬆️
124. Logan Marchi, Temple ❄️
125. James Blackman, Florida State
126. Dwayne Haskins, Ohio State
127. Gardner Minshew, ECU
128. Kyle Bolin, Rutgers ❄️
129. Kyler Murray, Oklahoma
130. Ben DiNucci, Pittsburgh
131. Kasim Hill, Maryland
132. Josh Love, San Jose State ❄️
133. Cole Garvin, South Alabama ❄️
134. Lamar Jordan, New Mexico ⬆️
135. Montel Aaron, San Jose State ❄️
136. Johnathan Brantley, Tulane
137. John Urzua, MTSU
138. John O’Korn, Michigan
139. Chayce Crouch, Illinois ❄️
140. James Morgan, Bowling Green
141. Nick Holley, Kent State
142. Jason Driskel, Florida Atlantic ⬆️
143. Jordan Love, Utah State
144. Drew Anderson, Buffalo ⬆️
145. Tyler Keane, Coastal Carolina ⬆️
146. Tevaka Tuioti, New Mexico
147. Sam Glaesmann, Rice ⛔️
148. Coltin Gerhart, New Mexico ⬆️
149. D.J. Gillins, SMU
150. Jackson Tyner, Rice ❄️

Top 10 single-game performances

QB Game PAtt-Yds-TD-INT RAtt-Yds-TD QBL
Baker Mayfield, OU @ #2 Ohio St. 35 — 386 — 3 — 0 7 — -5 — 0 35.95
Nick Fitzgerald, MSU vs. #12 LSU 23 — 180 — 2 — 0 14 — 88 — 2 21.24
Riley Ferguson, MEM vs. #25 UCLA 38 — 398 — 6 — 1 4 — -4 — 0 20.86
Sam Darnold, USC vs. #14 Stan. 26 — 316 — 4 — 2 2 — 4 — 0 17.13
Zach Smith, BAYL vs. #3 Okla. 50 — 463 — 4 — 0 7 — -23 — 0 16.03
Kelly Bryant, CLEM @ #14 L’ville 32 — 316 — 1 — 0 18 — 26 — 2 15.91
Nic Shimonek, TT vs. Arizona St. 50 — 543 — 6 — 0 4 — -24 — 0 13.99
Josh Rosen, UCLA vs. Hawaii 25 — 329 — 5 — 0 2 — -17 — 0 13.93
Lamar Jackson, LOU @ N. Carolina 39 — 393 — 3 — 0 19 — 132 — 3 13.25
Luke Falk, WSU vs. #5 USC 51 — 340 — 2 — 1 8 — -9 — 0 13.25

The post NCAA QB rankings, Week 6: Washington State’s Luke Falk is ‘on fire’ appeared first on Diehards.

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