In a draft class crammed with quarterbacks, where will Mason Rudolph land?

By Tim Hackett
April 26, 2018

By now you've heard about Baker Mayfield, Josh Rosen, and Josh Allen. You've heard about Sam Darnold and Lamar Jackson. But have you heard much about Mason Rudolph? The former Oklahoma State quarterback led the nation in passing yards, holds multiple school records and finished seventh in this year's Heisman Trophy voting. Yet, few experts have settled on where he may be selected in the NFL draft.

To get you set for when his name gets called in Arlington, here are five things to know about the Stillwater standout. 

His college career started a bit earlier than planned

Rudolph was expected to redshirt at Oklahoma State in 2014 but was promoted as the team's No. 1 option when two other quarterbacks went down with injuries. He debuted in a road game against No. 7 Baylor but lost. His first victory came the following week on the road against archrival No. 18 Oklahoma. Rudolph led the Cowboys to a Cactus Bowl win against Washington.

The Carolina schools didn't consider him

Mason played high school football in Rock Hill, South Carolina, His father, Brett, was a linebacker at North Carolina, but UNC didn't recruit Mason until late. The University of South Carolina did not recruit him at all. 

When Fox Sports asked Rudolph why he wasn't a target for Steve Spurrier's Gamecocks, he replied: “Your guess is as good as mine. My family was a little baffled with that one." 

Rudolph ended up picking Oklahoma State's pass-heavy offense over LSU. 

He's got the numbers

Nobody in college football threw for more than Rudolph's 4,904 yards last season. Only Drew Lock, Mayfield and Riley Ferguson threw for more touchdowns than Rudolph's 37. Rudolph holds the program record for most career passing yards which put him ahead of coach Mike Gundy and Cowboy quarterback Brandon Weeden.

Still, scouts are skeptical about Rudolph's track record, given that he played in Gundy's quarterback-friendly Air Raid offense, and that he had standout wideout James Washington to hoist sideline passes towards for the last few years. 

He's made a lasting impact on (at least) one family 

On October 3, 2015, following a home win over Kansas State, members of the Oklahoma State football team were paired with children suffering from cancer. Rudolph met four-year-old Gavin King, who was diagnosed with brain cancer in February 2015. Rudolph and King stayed in touch and the kid's family was invited back for another game in November as Rudolph's guests. Not long after Christmas, Gavin passed away. The King family remains in contact with Rudolph.

He wants it that way

Talk about chance encounters. While Rudolph, a devout Christian, was on a visit to Israel with his grandparents in 2015, he ran into Nick Carter and Kevin Richardson, two founding members of the Backstreet Boys.

It looks like he's deleted the initial tweet about the meeting, but not to worry: the Internet never forgets, and we managed to procure the photo for you. Thank us later. 

Credit: @Rudolph2Mason on Twitter

Mason's back; all right!

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