Nov 6, 2021; South Bend, Indiana, USA; Notre Dame Fighting Irish quarterback Tyler Buchner (12) runs the ball as Navy Midshipmen linebacker Diego Fagot (54) pursues in the second quarter at Notre Dame Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Matt Cashore-USA TODAY Sports
Entering the 2022 season, there’s some uncertainty surrounding Notre Dame football, especially at the quarterback position.
Gone is Jack Coan after he was a one-year rental for the Irish from Wisconsin and he had an up-and-down campaign. He was the most consistent quarterback on the roster which isn’t saying much because the other two passers had a combined three career pass attempts entering the 2021 season. Drew Pyne had played in just two games in his Notre Dame career and Tyler Buchner was a true freshman.
Now that Coan is gone, Pyne and Buchner are going to be the early favorites to compete for the starting job while four-star incoming freshman Steve Angeli could be a dark-horse.
Notre Dame didn’t hit the portal for a quarterback, although Jayden Daniels would be a fun option.
But Buchner is the top dog at the position heading into his sophomore season after passing for 298 yards and three touchdowns on 21-of-35 completions to go along with three interceptions. He also showed that he’s the best athlete at the position, rushing for 336 yards and three more scores.
Is he capable of pulling an Ian Book and leading the Irish to the playoff in year two?
It’s honestly tough to say, especially since he was so up-and-down in 2021 as a true freshman. Playing quarterback at the FBS level just months after graduating high school isn’t easy, and it was clear that Buchner was struggling to adjust as he threw just as many interceptions as touchdown passes in 35 attempts.
There’s a reason Buchner was a top-100 recruit in the 2021 class, however. He has plenty of talent and potential, but he needs to work on his decision-making.
If there’s a quarterback on Notre Dame’s roster capable of leading the Irish to a playoff, it has to be Buchner. But he may still be a year away from reaching his potential.
Expect plenty of growth for Buchner this offseason as he wins the starting job.
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