Shea Patterson’s transfer to Michigan elevates quarterback competition


ANN ARBOR, Mich. — The quarterback competition at Michigan in 2018 just got a shot in the arm with the addition of Shea Patterson.

Patterson announced Monday that he will join the Wolverines for the 2018 spring semester, after two seasons at Mississippi.

Patterson is immediately eligible to transfer, following reports last week that Ole Miss has removed transfer limitations on players after the NCAA levied sanctions Dec. 1 against the Rebels football program. However, Patterson’s immediate eligibility is unclear, as the NCAA would need to grant a waiver allowing his transfer without penalty.

Patterson’s move to Michigan makes him one of the leading candidates to become Michigan’s starting quarterback next season, and Patterson brings a wealth of experience against high-caliber college football opponents.

Shea Patterson’s statistics at Ole Miss

Season Games Yards Passing TDs INTs
2017 7 2,259 166-260 17 9
2016 3 880 72-132 6 3

Patterson also is a potential NFL draft pick when his college career ends. projects Patterson as a first-round selection in 2019, and a strong season at Michigan would boost his draft stock.

What it means for Shea Patterson

Jim Harbaugh has brought in a transfer at quarterback for the third time since he took over at Michigan (John O’Korn and Jake Rudock in 2015). O’Korn had to sit out a year due to NCAA transfer guidelines while Rudock immediately stepped into the lineup, throwing for more than 3,000 yards as a graduate transfer.

Rudock provided experience and stability. Patterson can do the same at Michigan, but he has to adapt to a pro-style offense that needs a boost in productivity. The Wolverines were ninth in the Big Ten Conference in total yards (354.9) and 11th in passing yards per game (168.6) this season.

Patterson could be a one-and-done at Michigan if he is granted a waiver that will allow him to play in 2018. He will be motivated to produce, which would only help his NFL draft stock.

What it means for Michigan’s quarterbacks

Patterson hasn’t been anointed the starter. But he’s now the leader of Michigan’s quarterback corps, and Brandon Peters could again be relegated to a backup role.

Peters is the only returning quarterback with any substantial experience (37-for-64 passing, 486 yards, 4 touchdown passes in five games). Dylan McCaffrey redshirted in 2017 and is expected to factor into the 2018 quarterback competition.

A key element of Michigan’s program isn’t about immediate productivity — it’s about developing players for three or four years down the road.

McCaffrey has four seasons of eligibility. With the possibility of Patterson leaving after one season for the NFL, he’ll shift back to being a long-term investment for the Wolverines. So will incoming freshmen Kevin Doyle and Joe Milton. Milton plans to sign his national letter of intent later this month and join Michigan as an early enrollee. Doyle plans to join the Wolverines next summer.

The addition of Patterson means more competition at quarterback. A favorite phrase of Harbaugh’s is “iron sharpens iron” — a biblical reference, Proverbs 27:17: “Iron sharpens iron; so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend.”

Harbaugh makes a point to emphasize competition, and his best players thrive on it.

The post Shea Patterson’s transfer to Michigan elevates quarterback competition appeared first on Land of 10.

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