One popular discussion point over the last few weeks is should Georgia Tech bring in a transfer at the quarterback position?
With the transition from a triple-option offense to a pro-style based offense, the discussion of where Georgia Tech will turn at quarterback is very popular. With some rather big-name quarterbacks on the transfer market as well, it has only added to the discussion. With that being said, should the Jackets bring in a transfer at quarterback?
What the Yellow Jackets have:
Heading into next season, the Yellow Jackets will have five quarterbacks on scholarship. Those five quarterbacks are;
- Lucas Johnson
- Tobias Oliver
- James Graham
- Jordan Yates
- Demetrius Knight
Lucas Johnson – RS Junior
Johnson will be a redshirt junior next fall and is coming off a serious leg injury that kept him out for the entire season. Of the quarterbacks on the roster currently, Johnson is probably the favorite to land the starting quarterback job and for what it’s worth, was considered a pro-style quarterback coming out of high school. However, most of this will depend on how Johnson is recovering from his injury.
Tobias Oliver – RS Sophomore
It seems that the general consensus including my own that Oliver is most likely going to move to another position under Geoff Collins. The most likely spot is at wide receiver, a position that would surely take advantage of his strengths and speed. He’s not a terrible passer but he’s not as strong as you’d hope either considering it will be a pro-style offense.
James Graham – RS Freshman
Graham was a four-star quarterback coming out of high school and has a chance to be special for the Yellow Jackets. However, Graham was suspended for the bowl game due to academic issues and it will be important to see if he is able to fix those issues before we start to talk about his potential on the field. But once he’s eligible to practice and play, Graham has the potential to be a heck of a quarterback for the Jackets.
Jordan Yates – Freshman
Yates has the potential to win the starting job as a true freshman but it probably will be an uphill battle. Yates is a talented quarterback and has the potential to be a steal for the Jackets in this year’s recruiting class. He’ll get his chance sooner or later, he’ll just have to be patient.
Demetrius Knight – Freshman
Knight has potential but given Geoff Collins signing day comments, it wouldn’t be surprising if Knight eventually moves to another position. No matter where he plays he has a solid chance of being at the very least a decent contributor for the Jackets.
Overall, the Jackets have a room of quarterbacks that have plenty of potential. The talent, however, is not the question. The question surrounding this room of quarterbacks is how strong they can be when throwing the ball. Everyone knows each of the quarterbacks can run with the ball, but can they throw 20-30 passes per game and be successful doing so? It’s not a question the coaching staff will have an answer to anytime soon. With that being said, I believe the Jackets should explore the transfer quarterback market.
Potential Transfer Options:
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Jalen Hurts – Alabama
Hurts hasn’t officially announced any decisions to transfer but it wouldn’t be shocking if he chose to in order to have one more chance of being a starting quarterback in college. The Jackets according to reports will be hiring Alabama offensive line coach Brent Key as the offensive line coach and associate head coach. Perhaps that connection could be a factor. It feels like a long shot but it could work.
Justin Fields – Georgia
Fields is a year removed from being one of the most wanted recruits in America and while he is interested in transferring, including being listed in the transfer portal, there hasn’t been any official statements just of yet. If Fields does decide to transfer, it seems that Ohio State would be the favorite. That being said, Geoff Collins would surely make a run at keeping Fields in Georgia, if UGA doesn’t block the Jackets. That all being said, Fields would most likely have to sit out a season unless the NCAA approved a waiver.
Brandon Wimbush – Notre Dame
Wimbush like Hurts and Fields was once a highly sought out quarterback and after having a good run at Notre Dame, Wimbush’s time ran out when Ian Book took over. Wimbush like every quarterback has his deficiencies, but at the same time, Wimbush is a capable quarterback and would be a good option of smoothing the Jackets transition in the first year.
Ben Hicks – SMU
Hicks is transferring from SMU after setting numerous school records and could be a strong choice for the Jackets. He doesn’t have the name recognition of the three quarterbacks above but is a quarterback who can probably come in and give the Jackets a decent 2018. He’s not the most talented quarterback but he may be good enough to get the Jackets 6-7 wins on the season.
Tyree Jackson – Buffalo
Jackson is a 6-foot-7 quarterback and is the definition of a pocket passer. Like Hicks, Jackson isn’t the most talented quarterback or isn’t the most polished but he did put together a successful career at Buffalo. There would be questions of what he can do in the ACC coming over from the MAC but he may be worth a shot if there is mutual interest.
Overall, there are more quarterback options out there but Geoff Collins and staff are more likely to aim high to begin with before moving down the list. These are just five notable names but in the upcoming days and weeks, more players will be announcing their intention to transfer.