With less than four weeks to go until Michigan opens its 2018 season in a marquee matchup with Notre Dame, the Wolverines still have yet to name a starting quarterback. While a decision is coming soon, Jim Harbaugh insists the competition remains wide open.
Harbaugh told reporters on Monday that he plans to name a starting QB “sooner rather than later,” but he also noted that the battle between Ole Miss transfer Shea Patterson, redshirt sophomore Brandon Peters, graduate transfer Jeff George Jr., freshman Joe Milton and Dylan McCaffrey of the famous McCaffrey football family is still quite close.
“None of them have given in,” Harbaugh said, per ESPN’s Dan Murphy. “None of them have dropped off, so it rages on.”
Patterson, who transferred to Michigan last December from Ole Miss and was ruled eligible to play immediately, seems like the frontrunner to win the job. Peters is probably the next-best bet, as he took over as Michigan’s starter last November and played in five games.
Harbaugh did not put a timeline on making his decision, nor did he say whether he will announce the starter publicly ahead of the Sept. 1 season opener. He has not named a starting QB prior to the start of the season in any of his first three seasons at Michigan, so he will likely stick with that approach.
We have already heard how confident one of Michigan’s quarterbacks is that he can lead the team, and we’ll know soon enough if that confidence translates into him being the best man for the job.
Quarterback Shea Patterson has been ruled eligible for the 2018 season after his transfer to Michigan, and he’s already setting his sights high.
Patterson left Ole Miss under a cloud of NCAA sanctions, and now he thinks the Wolverines can contend for a championship this season.
“I would’ve stayed (at Ole Miss) if it wasn’t for the situation we were in,” Patterson said, via Josh Henschke of 247 Sports. “I can live with throwing an interception in the National Championship game or before we get there in the playoff. It might be hard to live with that but I don’t know if I could live with not being able to get the chance to compete for one. I think watching Michigan all last year, with the guys we’ve got coming back on defense, I feel like we have a really good shot of doing that.”
As of Friday, Patterson is good to go for 2018. It’s fair to say given the talent they’ve had that the Wolverines have underachieved under Jim Harbaugh, in large part because they have never had great quarterback play. They’ll be looking to Patterson to change all that.
The University of Michigan football team shared some positive news on Friday.
The school officially announced that quarterback Shea Patterson has been declared eligible to play this fall by the NCAA.
Patterson transferred to Michigan from Ole Miss. Patterson argued that he was transferring and should receive immediately eligibility because he was lied to by Ole Miss about the extent of the penalties they were facing from the NCAA. The Rebels reportedly contested his request.
Patterson was a top recruit out of high school and put up some nice numbers last season as a sophomore. He passed for 2,259 yards, 17 touchdowns and nine interceptions before getting injured. He compiled most of his stats against bad teams and struggled against good defenses like Alabama and LSU (0 touchdowns/5 interceptions). He appeared to lose the starting job to Jordan Ta’amu, who played better in his absence.
Michigan could use the quarterback help as that has been a weak spot for Jim Harbaugh since he took over the program. Patterson being granted immediate eligibility further helps because Wilton Speight left for UCLA as a graduate transfer.
Ole Miss objected to Shea Patterson’s request for a transfer waiver from the NCAA, according to a report.
CBS Sports’ Dennis Dodd has been following the story of Patterson’s attempt to be cleared by the NCAA to play immediately at Michigan this fall. Patterson, a former top high school quarterback recruit, announced in December his intent to transfer from Ole Miss to Michigan. He ordinarily would have to sit out a season, but he’s petitioning the NCAA to play now because he says he and others were misled by former Ole Miss coach Hugh Freeze about the scope of the NCAA investigation against the program. Ole Miss disputes that.
Dodd says Ole Miss had the opportunity to respond to Patterson’s request for a waiver. They could have been supportive, neutral, or opposed to it, and they apparently contested the appeal.
The next step is the NCAA ruling on the case. Some legal experts feel Patterson has a great case to win his request.
The determination regarding Patterson could also impact the future of Wilton Speight. He is considering leaving Michigan for another program as a graduate transfer, but he could stay if Patterson is not cleared.
Former Ole Miss quarterback Shea Patterson is one of several players who transferred from the school after the Rebels were hit with a two-year postseason ban back in December, and there have been questions about whether he will be able to play at Michigan in 2018. As of now, it seems like he has a good shot.
Land of 10 spoke with several NCAA policy experts recently about Patterson’s situation, and the consensus was that Patterson should be granted a waiver to not have to sit out a season, which is what transfers are typically required to do.
“This is a severely compromised system. This is not a system of the athletes’ making. As a result of that, there should be an appropriate response to allowing these athletes to fulfill their playing careers in places where they can have success, unfettered by rules violations that are really a testament to the dysfunctions in the system, and that they were having no party to,” Drexel University professor Ellen J. Staurowsky said of the sanctions against Ole Miss and the impact they had on recruits.
Ole Miss has been accused of downplaying the NCAA’s investigation into its program, telling recruits the violations were committed by former head coach Houston Nutt and should not have a major impact on the program going forward. That obviously wasn’t true.
“The Ole Miss revelations that came out from the Houston Nutt case and the conscious media effort on the part of Ole Miss in terms of that  recruiting class — the combination of all those things are things that I think provide compelling arguments to allow this player to play,” Staurowsky added.
David Ridpath, associate professor of sport management at Ohio University, agreed with Staurowsky.
“I still think it’s a coin-flip to decide, but I think the NCAA will do the right thing,” Ridpath, who is also the president of an advocacy group seeking NCAA academic reform, told Land of 10. “Shea Patterson will be available to start for Michigan [this fall]. It’s not a guarantee … that’s coming from a common-sense standpoint.”
Other experts agreed that the NCAA is inconsistent when it comes to making rulings on these types of cases, but it would be a very bad look to punish former Ole Miss players for violations they had no hand in and were misled about.
One quarterback recruit decommitted from Michigan earlier this month, so that could be a good sign that there is optimism Patterson will be ruled eligible for the 2018 season.
Ole Miss quarterback Shea Patterson announced Monday he is transferring to Michigan to continue his college career.
Patterson shared a note on Twitter confirming the news after visiting the campus for an official visit over the weekend.
Patterson, the top-ranked quarterback in the 2016 recruiting class, is a nice get for Michigan. It doesn’t come as a huge surprise, as he never really considered any other schools, and he’ll have the opportunity to play right away given the issues the Wolverines have had at quarterback.
It is unclear if Patterson will be able to play right away for the Wolverines. He would have to get an NCAA waiver, but that may not be particularly difficult given the sanctions hitting the program. If he isn’t forced to sit out a year, he’ll likely compete with sophomore Brandon Peters for the starting role.
Michigan’s big weakness this season was at the quarterback position. It seems like that may be addressed soon.
The Michigan Insider’s Sam Webb reported on Thursday that he strongly expects Shea Patterson to end up transferring to the Wolverines. In fact, he says Patterson only has one visit scheduled.
Patterson, a sophomore from Shreveport, La., passed for 2,259 yards, 17 touchdowns and 9 interceptions for Ole Miss before suffering a season-ending PCL injury. Though his stats were nice on the surface, most of them were achieved against inferior opponents. Patterson struggled against teams like Alabama and LSU, while also throwing three interceptions against Cal. Against Alabama and LSU, Patterson completed just 46% of his passes for only 281 yards, no touchdowns and five interceptions. Jordan Ta’amu seemingly played better than Patterson when he became the starter for Ole Miss.
Michigan’s No. 1 quarterback this season, Wilton Speight, has announced that he will transfer. Brandon Peters is expected to start the team’s bowl game and would provide competition for the starting job next season.
Every year, college football produces its share of breakout players. These can be guys playing at smaller schools putting up big numbers, players who were in the shadow of elite teammates who have now gone to the NFL or graduated, or even guys who were already pretty well known but have taken an even bigger step forward to put themselves into elite company.
Here’s a look at 12 NCAA players who have really become breakout stars in 2017.
Kelly Bryant, QB, Clemson
Bryant served two years as Deshaun Watson’s deputy at Clemson, but nobody could really be sure how he was going to cope with being the starting quarterback for the reigning national champions. So far, he has passed every test with flying colors. Though he has thrown for only two touchdowns in three games, he has completed nearly 70 percent of his passes and has proven to be a threat with his legs, racking up five touchdowns on the ground. He broke out with 342 all-purpose yards and three total touchdowns against Louisville, going toe-to-toe with reigning Heisman winner Lamar Jackson on the road and coming out the victor.
Darren Andrews, WR, UCLA
It’s a pretty good gig to become one of Josh Rosen’s favorite targets, as Andrews is quickly finding out. The senior had some modest success in his first three seasons at UCLA, but he entered the 2017 season with five career touchdowns to his name. He’s surpassed that tally in 2017 alone. Only one player in the nation has more than Andrews’s 409 receiving yards so far in the season, and none have topped his total of six touchdown receptions. Rosen can feel good about throwing to him.
Shea Patterson may be the next big thing at Ole Miss, and he got some nice lovin’ after leading the Rebels to a win on Saturday.
Playing in his first career game following the season-ending injury to Chad Kelly, the freshman quarterback threw for 338 yards and two touchdowns while leading Ole Miss to a 29-28 win over Texas A&M.
After the win, the IMG Academy product got a nice kiss from his girlfriend, Camille Lamb.
Head to Page 2 for more photos of Camille Lamb