Kevin Hogan may be Starting to get it

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Sep 19, 2015; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Stanford Cardinal quarterback Kevin Hogan (8) throws a pass against the Southern California Trojans at Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

When John Elway left the Stanford Cardinal for the NFL in 1983, John Paye was left with the uneviable task of following him at quarterback. And he wasn’t treated fairly as it was through no fault of his own that he was average, following one of the best ever. These last few years, current Cardinal quarterback Kevin Hogan has the same deal, following Andrew Luck.

But I would say the treatment he had been getting is fair because he doesn’t have to be average. At 6’4″, 225 pounds with a cannon for an arm and athleticism to go with it, Hogan has the talent to be great. He has teased everyone around him with that talent but just hasn’t put it together throughout his career.

He started this season completing 57.1 percent of his passes with no TDs and an INT in an embarrassing 16-6 loss to Northwestern. Then after a more respectable outing against Central Florida, he would be tested by the No. 6-rated USC Trojans. And Hogan responded with what looks like a breakthrough performance in a 41-31 win Saturday night.

He completed 18-23 passes for 279 yards, 3 TDs and most importantly, he did not turn the ball over. He showed tremendous accuracy, (especially on his deep balls) mobility, composure and grit to play hurt. Either Hogan finally gets it as a senior or this is the up portion of his inconsistency.

Cardinal head coach David Shaw told ESPN after the game, “He’s what we expected this year. Not that he’s doing anything he hasn’t done before. Great rhythm as a pocked passer, he did a great job of diagnosing their defense and getting us in the right play.”

He went into Saturday just outside the top 10 in the quarterback prospect rankings and projected into round five. But he had to have climbed the ladder some, especially after Cardale Jones played his way down the rankings Saturday. If Saturday was truly a breakthrough performance and he’s consistent the rest of the way, you never know what can happen  next May.

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