Big 12 Quarterbacks Patrick Mahomes, Brock Purdy, Compete for Super Bowl 58 on Sunday

Battle of Big 12s

Super Bowl LVIII isn’t just a clash of two of the best football franchises in NFL history, it’s a meeting of Big 12 alumni who defied expectations. While Patrick Mahomes, the Chiefs’ superstar, was a highly touted prospect, Brock Purdy, the 49ers’ late-round gem, entered the league as “Mr. Irrelevant.” Mahomes is the second-highest-paid quarterback in the NFL at $52.65 million annually. Brock Purdy by comparison is making a mere $870,000 for the season. But their college careers offer fascinating similarities and contrasts.

Mahomes, at Texas Tech, thrived in an air-raid offense known for its flashy plays and big numbers. He amassed 11,486 passing yards and 93 touchdowns in three seasons, showcasing his arm talent and improvisational skills. Purdy, at Iowa State, operated in a more balanced, run-heavy scheme. He played four seasons, collecting 9,805 passing yards and 88 touchdowns, demonstrating leadership and resilience while facing tougher defenses.

Both quarterbacks boast impressive college resumes. Mahomes holds the Big 12 record for single-season passing yards (5,425) and total touchdowns (53), while Purdy ranks third in Big 12 history with 30 wins as a starter. While Mahomes edged out Purdy in passing yards and touchdowns, Purdy boasted a higher completion percentage and fewer interceptions.

Mahomes led Texas Tech to two bowl games, but never reached a conference championship. Purdy guided Iowa State to three bowl appearances, including a run to the 2020 Big 12 Championship game. Individually, Mahomes garnered more national recognition, earning First-Team All-Big 12 honors and the 2016 Sammy Baugh Award for top collegiate passer. Purdy, despite his consistent performance, received Second-Team All-Big 12 nods twice but flew under the radar nationally.

Both quarterbacks battled through challenges. Mahomes missed his sophomore season due to injury and faced criticism for his unorthodox throwing style. Purdy, overlooked due to his smaller stature and playing in a less-flashy system, entered the draft as the 262nd overall pick of the 2022 NFL draft.

Despite their contrasting paths, both quarterbacks defied expectations. Mahomes emerged as an NFL MVP and Super Bowl champion, while Purdy, after going 7-0 as a rookie, leads the 49ers to the Super Bowl in his first season as a starter.

Super Bowl LVIII presents a unique opportunity to witness two contrasting college journeys converge on the biggest stage. Will Mahomes’ experience and established brilliance prevail, or will Purdy continue his fairytale with another victory?

One more thing. Never forget that Skyler Howard of WVU, beat Patrick Mahomes in 2015, 31-26 and again in 2016, 48-17. On the other hand Will Grier lost to Brock Purdy in 2018, 30-14. The Mountaineers lost again to Purdy in 2019 and 2020. WVU with the help of Jarrett Doege, finally got a win against Purdy in 2021, winning 38-31!

Enjoy the 2024 Battle of the Big 12 Quarterbacks on Sunday, February 11 at 6:30 pm!

*Article written with the assistance of Google Bard.