J.T. Barrett may never be mentioned in the same breath as players like Troy Smith or Eddie George, but if that's the case, then the failure is on us, not him. On Saturday night, one of the best quarterbacks in Ohio State history got a little bit better, and his 27-33 passing night vaulted him ahead of Todd Boeckman to become the most accurate passer in Buckeye history.
A quick caveat; to meet the criteria of "most accurate passer," a quarterback needs to have thrown at least 150 passes for Ohio State (150 being the very low end of an average single season in recent years). Thus, while Kenny Guiton might miss out of this ranking, 25 other Ohio State quarterbacks meet this mark. Until tonight, Todd Boeckman (yes, really) stood at the top of this list with a 63.4% completion rate. But then Barrett eviscerated the Nebraska defense for three quarters, and all of a sudden J.T.'s lifetime completion percentage moved up to 63.7%.
This is significant for a few reasons. One, if any narrative still existed about J.T. Barrett regressing as a quarterback in his final season as a Buckeye, that should now be completely dead. For all the grousing about his abilities as a passer that we saw after the Oklahoma game, it's clear that he's made huge strides in the games since then.
Secondly, and more importantly, what's really astonishing about this feat is the fact that Barrett has a 63.7% completion rate after a whopping 1046 passing attempts. That's not just the most passing attempts of any quarterback in Ohio State history, it's also nearly 100 more than Art Schlichter, 200 more than Bobby Hoying and Greg Frey, 250 more than Terrelle Pryor, 300 more than Joe Germaine, and hell you've still got to scroll down the list a bit before you get to Troy Smith. Only two of those guys, Smith and Pryor, have completion percentages over 60%.
Point is, J.T. Barrett has been very, very good for a very long time. And for now at least, he sits atop a pretty impressive list of football players.