The Daily Pennsylvanian is a student-run nonprofit.

Please support us by disabling your ad blocker on our site.

Junior quarterback Aidan Sayin during the game against Columbia on Oct. 14. Credit: Anna Vazhaeparambil

Six games into the 2023 season, Penn football sits at 5-1 overall, a strong indication of the team's success. But amid that hot start, one player has found individual success that transcends the current campaign.

That player is junior quarterback Aidan Sayin, who has looked better than ever during his second season as the Quakers’ full-time starter. After a career-high 364 passing yards in last week’s 27-17 win over Yale, Sayin has now thrown for a total of 1,007 yards over the Red and Blue’s first three Ivy League games. That pace is not just elite — it is historic.

Sayin’s average of 335.7 passing yards per game puts him on pace to throw for roughly 2,350 yards over the course of the Quakers' seven Ivy League games this year — putting him within striking distance of Penn’s all-time record of 2,384 set by Gavin Hoffman in 2000.

With four Ancient Eight games to go, Sayin will need to average just over 344 passing yards per contest the rest of the way in order to surpass Hoffman’s mark. Maintaining his record-breaking pace may prove challenging for Sayin as the Quakers’ conference schedule heats up. Two of the Red and Blue’s next three games are against Brown and Harvard — the only two teams to defeat Penn last season. Sayin averaged just under 220 passing yards in those two games.

There are several factors driving Sayin’s torrid production outside of his own excellent play. One is the Quaker play calling. Penn’s 296 passing attempts rank second in the Ivy League. Another is the superb performance of the Red and Blue's receiving core, highlighted by sophomore wide receiver Jared Richardson, who ranks second in the Ancient Eight in receiving yards with 501 and recently broke the program record for catches in a game with a 17-reception, 191-yard explosion against the Bulldogs.

Sayin’s record-breaking quest continues Friday night when the Quakers host the only Ivy League team that features a more prolific passing attack: Brown. Bears quarterback Jake Wilcox leads the conference in both yards and attempts, while wide receiver Wes Rockett tops the receiving list. 

In a showdown between the league’s two highest flyers, bragging rights will undoubtedly be at stake. But more importantly, both teams will seek another critical conference win to further their claim to an even greater title: Ivy League champions.