That means there is no debate possible. Benny Friedman. Benny Friedman. Benny Friedman. As noted above, he was ever bit as big as Red Grange. Indeed, if not for him, the NFL might not have been around for Johnny U to make an institution.
Who was the best UofM QB?
Tom Brady based on his production in the NFL
was best while at Michigan.
For one beautiful year, Brian Griese.
No one had a better season than him.
For a career? Chadley Jonathan Henne.
that they would be correct.
But another blast from the past is Harry Newman, QB in 1932. It has been stated that he almost uncertainly would have won the Heisman if it existed then, during an 8-0 season out-scoring opponents 123-13. He also kicked the FG that beat our biggest rival at the time, Minnesota, 3-0.
Of the list of QB's that played in the modern era (like, when they didn't play defense as well and have key ints. like Friedman had), there's Moorehead, Franklin, Leach, Wangler, Smith, Harbaugh, Grbac, Collins, Griese, Henson, Brady, Navarre, and Henne.
There is no clear-cut answer as all have certain flaws. Leach had a great record, but the Michigan teams were dominant against very over-matched opponents and he really was an average passer at best. Same with Franklin.
Some had only one really good season (Greise, Henson and Navarre); some never beat beat their primary rival (Henne). Henne (37) is the career leader in Ints; Grbac and Navarre are close (31), tied at 4th. Navarre probably is the career leader in passes batted down. Griese was aided by what was arguably the best defense Michigan has had in 70 years. Brady's NFL success is not included in his Michigan stats.
I think that Jim Harbaugh was Michigan's best QB when considering all those who played around him, his teams success, and what he meant to the team. Although he played in the late '80's under Bo, he still is near the top of many all-time categories, including efficiency (#2), passing yards per game (#3), completion percentage (#3), ect.
Besides, what I think I liked most about Harbaugh was that he wasn't afraid to audible away from play-calls of Bo's that obviously were destined to fail. Not many of Bo's QB's did that.
But my favorite was Steve Smith, as he was an excellent passer when he wasn't required to run a lot and get beaten up. He was also reportedly the second-fastest player on the team (a guy named Carter was the fastest).
Even during Bo's 3-yards and a cloud of dust game planning, Smith is still top-10 on most of the career lists (attempts, completion, TDs, yards per game - and those don't include his rushing).
Thanks for synthesizing over 100 posts!
Couple things - your interceptions number should be broken down to per-attempt. If you throw more passes, naturally you are going to throw more interceptions.
Navarre was definitely the leader in passes knocked down...I would also give him most passes rocketed off a thigh pad or face mask from 5 yards away.
Greatest quarterback ever