How do you set 23 Southern Conference passing records without making first-team all-league or winning a player of the year award?
No problem, if you are Elon senior quarterback Scott Riddle and you've played for three years in the same league as Jayson Foster and Armanti Edwards.
Foster, a speedy option QB at Georgia Southern, and Edwards, the Appalachian State phenom, won the last three Walter Payton awards, given to the top football player in FCS (Division I-AA). Edwards, in particular, dominated the SoCon during his four seasons, leading the Mountaineers to four straight league titles, two national championships and two straight Payton awards.
But Edwards is now catching punts and passes for the Carolina Panthers in the NFL, and it's Riddle's time to bask in the SoCon spotlight.
"I definitely look at Armanti and see him as a measuring stick," says Riddle, a 6-0, 210-pounder from Ramseur, N.C., and the SoCon preseason offensive player of the year. "He had a great career and I know he will do well in the NFL with the talent that kid's got.
"I know I can't reach the platform he did with all the titles he won. But going out my senior year with a conference title, there would be no shame in that."
Even without Edwards, App State is the consensus pick to win its sixth straight SoCon title. But Elon, 9-3 overall and 7-1 in the league a year ago, is the team best positioned to take advantage should the Mountaineers slip in the post-Armanti era.
That's due largely to Riddle, who will be a fourth-year starter this season. Riddle completed 64.9 percent of his passes for 3,345 yards and 23 touchdowns last year, against just seven interceptions.
Elon coach Pete Lembo, 29-17 in four seasons with the Phoenix, says Riddle has embraced his role as a senior captain and "taken ownership of things."
But Riddle's job will be complicated by the departure of record-setting receiver Terrell Hudgins, who was a 6-2, 225-pound security blanket for Riddle the last three years and is now in camp with Dallas Cowboys.
"Of course I'm going to miss the guy," Riddle said. "He was arguably the best receiver in college football. It was kind of easy throwing to him; I could have completed passes to him left-handed. But we've got some guys who are going to step up. My job is to get them the ball and let them make plays, and if I can do that I think we'll have a good offense."
Riddle also plays third base for Elon's baseball team, and Citadel fans got a close look at his fiery nature at last season's SoCon baseball tournament. Riddle was a key figure in a brawl with the Bulldogs that left him ejected and suspended and Citadel coach Fred Jordan with an injured left shoulder. Riddle's suspension does not carry over to football.
"There's no place for that on the field," Riddle said, "and of course I regret what I did. That's not what Elon represents. I was highly remorseful for the tag I put on Elon and the negative publicity, but that's not what I'm about."
Depending on how his final seasons go, Riddle could be working toward a pro career in football or baseball at this time next year. But for now, he's trying to savor every moment left in his college career.
"Just thinking about (how fast it's gone) gives me goose bumps," he said. "It's a cliche, but it's going by fast and I didn't think it would. Just knowing that every day might be the last time I do something, it makes me think about where I've been and what I've done here."
And what's still left to do.