With Connor Brewer's announcement that he was going to transfer to Arizona many Wildcat fans were reminded of a number of other big school quarterbacks to transfer to Arizona. Some of the best passer's in school history started their careers at other schools and there has been a few who have made relatively little impact.
Nick Foles began his career at Michigan State.
The great debate for best transfer quarterback has to be between Nick Foles and Dan White.
Foles had the better numbers, in fact he was among the nation's leaders in passing for much of his career, but despite leading the Cats to two bowl games, he actually finished his career four games under .500.
After transferring from Michigan State, Foles threw for over 10,000 yards and 67 touchdowns. He took over for Matt Scott during the second half of a road loss to Iowa and never relinquished the job except for a few missed games due to injury.
Foles had Arizona in the Rose Bowl hunt in 2009, but a crushing overtime loss to Oregon derailed that bid and they went on to play in the Holiday Bowl. The next year the Wildcats were in the Alamo Bowl, but in both cases they lost in lopsided fashion.
Foles' real coming out party was his first start in 2009 when he took the Wildcats on the road to Corvallis. He threw for 254 yards and three scores and led the Wildcat to the win. Two games later he out-dueled Andrew Luck by throwing for 415 yards and three scores in a dramatic win over Stanford.
Foles was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles and assumed the starting job at the end of his rookie year when Michael Vick was lost to injury. He will battle Vick this fall for the starting job.
White came to Arizona from Penn State and was supposed to usher in a new era of offensive football. By today's standards his numbers are fairly pedestrian, but after years of Dick Tomey's option football, White seemed like the second coming on John Elway.
White threw for about half the yardage of Foles, but was a winner while under center for the Wildcats, going 23-11 in his Wildcat career and leading the Wildcats to three bowls and three wins over ASU.
White was, of course, overshadowed by the "Desert Swarm" defense but his contributions to the Wildcats cannot be overlooked.
When SMU received the death penalty in 1986 all of their players were free to transfer without penalty. Bobby Watters came to Arizona and looked to be a great fit for Arizona's "Wish and Shoot" offense. Watters was a decent passer as a junior for the Mustangs, but threw for less than 1,000 yards in parts of two seasons with the Wildcats.
Watters was injured his first season in Tucson and received a medical redshirt for a fifth year in 1988. That finalyear he and Ronnie Veal split time and led the Wildcats to a 7-4 record but no bowl berth despite finishing 5-3 in the Pac-10 and tying for third place.
John Rattay came into a situation similar to Brewer's. He was a big time Phoenix area quarterback who graduated early and went to a big time football power only to leave and return to an Arizona football program with an uncertain future.
In Rattay's case he went to Tennessee and then joined the Arizona program in time for the coaching change from Dick Tomey to John Mackovic. Rattay, despite his prep credentials, could not beat out Jason Johnson and served as his primary back-up in 2001. He is best remembered for his admirable fill-in role in the 2001 road loss to Washington. Johnson was knocked out with a questionable helmet-to-helmet hit while sliding and could not return. Rattay went 9-18-115 yards but a late Husky score sealed the win. Rattay was 27-59 for 385 yards that season and left for the junior college ranks. He returned to finish his career with the Wildcats but never saw the field again.
Kris Heavner began and finished his career at Arizona. In between he spent some time at Baylor before returning. Heavner, who was a part-time starter as a freshman and sophomore, threw just 36 passes after returning to the program. He's best remembered for his game against Oregon State in 2006. With Willie Tuitama and Adam Austin both out with injuries, Arizona started wide receiver Anthony Johnson for one series, then brought Heavner in. Heavner threw for 161 yards and two picks and the Wildcats gained just 183 yards for the game, but had a chance to tie the Beavers on the final possession.
Heavner drove the Wildcats to the Beaver 28, but was sacked and then took two deep shots downfield in the waning seconds. He later became a student assistant in the program and is now coaching high school in the Phoenix area.
His name sounded more like a 1970's detective than a QB, but Rutgers transfer Tom Savage looked like he might have a future at Arizona and would likely have been the favorite to be the QB this season. However, a family member became ill shortly after Rich Rodriguez took over and Savage returned to the East Coast to be closer to them. He wound up at Pitt and hopes to play this season after sitting out two straight seasons.
Current back-up Nick Isham began his career as a part-time starter at Louisiana Tech. He sat out last season and is a walk-on at Arizona. He will likely begin the season as the fourth or fifth string quarterback
Jesse Scroggins began his career at USC but he spent a year at a junior college before transferring to Arizona.
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