One week from today, Steve Spurrier's frustrations with Stephen Garcia will appear in our living rooms in visual form instead of the verbal variety on our computer screens and in our newspapers (just kidding, no one reads newspapers). And even though that game will involve no more than 26 total points scored, I will throw women and children out of the way as I race home from the office, setting a new world land speed record in order to make it in time for the first words that come out of Chris Fowler's mouth. Oh, what a sweet day it will be. And that would be your cue, Europe...
/wishing I could flawlessly execute stage moves with microphone and stand
For today, since I lead with a Spurrier intro, and we know how much he loves/hates his quarterbacks, we examine the seven quarterbacks in the SEC that I can remember wearing number seven. As you'll see in the list below, a wider range of skill in quarterbacking I cannot recall. Also, I kept the list in the 1992-present range because I'm lazy and didn't want to research anything, and, most importantly, I don't remember much that happened before 1992. So, here they are, the gunslingers of the number seven:
From left to right: Matt Wyatt, Brent Schaeffer, Barry Lunney, Jr., Casey Clausen, Michael Henig, Danny Wuerffel and Matthew Stafford
Interesting how they all stumbled out of the Southeast and into an old town of the Southwest. HOW DARE YOU QUESTION MY CHOICE OF BACKGROUNDS! If this were a crew/gang of gunfighters and they were in a movie, I'm pretty sure only Danny Wuerffel and Matthew Stafford would be alive at the end, assuming Wuerffel didn't kill Stafford to keep all the money for himself. Personally, I don't think Wuerffel would because by all accounts he's a great guy, but what we do know for certain is that the other five are probably done 45 minutes into the movie.
Danny Wuerffel, Florida
Clearly the leader of this outfit. No one can touch 114 TDs, 10,875 yards and just 42 INTs in like 250,000 passing attempts. While not as physically gifted as Stafford, he was blessed with instincts, touch, talent surrounding him and, of course, Steve Spurrier. You know that if Stafford tried to make a move to take control, Wuerffel would put a beautifully high arcing bullet directly between his eyes. As for the rest of the guys, he would fight them left handed, or, in the case of Michael Henig, with his left foot.
Matthew Stafford, Georgia
An outstanding number two. Raw and undisciplined, he could smote anyone (51 TDs, 7,731 yards) as well as be smote by anyone (33 INTs). He clearly has the highest ceiling (and the only ceiling since everyone else is done with football...wait, checking on Michael Henig....yes, everyone else is done), but unfortunately that ceiling is in Detroit where ceilings are about as high as the roof of a Ford Festiva.
Casey Clausen, Tennessee
The cagey veteran who put up surprisingly good numbers (75 TDs, 9,707 yards, 31 INTs) despite no one believing he was any good (and I'm pretty sure he wasn't). The reason he put up such high numbers is that he played forever (44 starts) while managing to spend brief periods of time playing above a mediocre level. In this movie that isn't a movie, I'd like to think he made a valiant stand, which allowed the others to escape. He knew he wasn't good enough to move on, but could hold up traffic for several hours by shooting their pursuers in the foot, the hand, the other foot, the other hand and the butt until they bled out because that's how he operated, little piece by little piece.
Barry Lunney, Jr., Arkansas
My memory of Lunney is a little hazy because I was around 12 at the time he was operating the Hogs' offense. While not a total stiff, Lunney is pretty forgettable (33 TDs, 5,782 yards, 28 INTs). In fact, I'm not sure Arkansas even joined the SEC until Houston Nutt got there. DO YOU REMEMBER ANYTHING BEFORE HIS ARRIVAL?
Brent Schaeffer, Ole Miss
And the official falling-off-a-cliff-drop-off of quarterbacking talent has begun (14 TDs, 2,028 yards, 14 INTs). In fairness to Schaeffer, he was never really given a chance to use his athletic abilities to his advantage until the last two games of his career. Thanks to Ed Orgeron, Schaeffer toiled away in what Orgeron called the "USC offense" or, what the rest of us call it, three years of poop on a stick. However, had Schaeffer been allowed to operate a version of the spread/read option, he would have been a less accurate version of Tyrod Taylor, which is still awful.
Matt Wyatt, Mississippi State
To this day, I have no idea how Wyatt played D-I football (16 TDs, 2,940 yards, 24 INTs). I think Jackie Sherrill started to slip in the mid to late 90's and forgot to forward the appropriate amount of money to the quarterback of his choice. Then Matt Wyatt showed up, asking to play quarterback. When an assistant approached Sherrill about Wyatt's interest in playing QB, Sherrill examined his depth chart and said, "Is he breathing?" And the rest was history.
Michael Henig, Mississippi State
Sylvester Croom's version of Matt Wyatt (10 TDs, 2,269 yards, 24 INTs). Henig, like Sylvester Croom, had no business being in D-I college football. So part of me always felt bad for him (like the time Croom let a fleet of Greyhounds roll over him by leaving him in the 2007 LSU game long enough to throw SIX interceptions). However, the other part of me cackled with delight when I saw Croom giving him instructions before sending him out on the field to do something else wrong.