Kyle Whittingham is getting Utah ready for another season with the Utes looking to pull off a 3-peat in the Pac-12. However, the competition looks particularly tough this season led by a deep field of elite quarterbacks.

At Pac-12 Media Day, Whittingham was asked about the group of QBs in the conference, and he admitted it is a league of QBs in the 2023 season. That group includes Utah star Cam Rising alongside Heisman winner Caleb Williams at USC, Oregon’s Bo Nix and Washington’s Michael Penix Jr., to name a few.

When the preseason All-Pac-12 teams came out, Williams was an unsurprising choice for the first team. Penix was the second-team choice while Nix served as the honorable mention choice.

While Whittingham acknowledged the strength of those players, he felt Rising was overlooked on the ballot. He also compared this year’s wealth of talent to Marcus Mariota’s time at Oregon.

Yeah, it is the conference of quarterbacks without a doubt. Just for an example, our guy, Cam Rising, who led us to the last two Pac-12 championships, is not even honorable mention, which is crazy to me. That speaks to the level of quarterbacks we have in the league. No disrespect to the guys that are the pre-season guys because they’re very deserving, have played exceptional football.

I think the only time that really compares to where the league is right now is when we first got in the league, it was Marcus Mariota, USC was Barkley. There were some really good quarterbacks when we first entered.

I think you’re right, this is probably the strongest group that we’ve ever had as a whole.

Cam Rising’s worth

In the past two seasons, Rising has thrown for over 5,500 yards with 46 touchdowns while leading Utah to a pair of Pac-12 titles. He also has 12 rushing touchdowns with the Utes going 20-8 overall the past two seasons.

We’ll see if Rising can prove some doubters wrong. If he does, Utah stands a great shot at a 3rd straight league championship.