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#pounditSunday, December 4, 2022

Matt Leinart rips Michigan over handling of QB situation

Matt Leinart at a press conference

Nov 29, 2021; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Matt Leinart attends a press conference to introduce Riley as Southern California Trojans head coach at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Jim Harbaugh is allowing Michigan’s quarterback battle to spill over into the regular season, and one former Heisman Trophy winner thinks that is a terrible idea.

Senior Cade McNamara and sophomore J.J. McCarthy competed for Michigan’s starting quarterback job throughout the offseason. Harbaugh announced over the weekend that the competition will not be settled until the Wolverines play their first two regular season games. McNamara will start against Colorado State in Week 1 and McCarthy will get the nod in Week 2 against Hawaii. Harbaugh will then decide which of the two will be named the full-time starter.

Matt Leinart had a strong reaction to Harbaugh’s approach.

The most unusual thing about Harbaugh’s approach is that he came out and announced it. By doing so, he almost boxed himself into the decision. How can he bench McNamara if the senior throws for 400 yards and 3 touchdowns in Week 1? Apparently he is committed to giving McCarthy a shot no matter what happens.

McNamara was the starter for the bulk of the 2021 season, which saw Michigan win the Big Ten and reach the College Football Playoff for the first time. McCarthy, a former five-star recruit, is the more mobile and arguably more dynamic player, but is also significantly less experienced. That showed at times in 2021, as his costly turnover was a key moment in Michigan’s only regular season defeat.

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