Will Tate Martell Transfer To UCLA, Arizona Or West Virginia?
This week Tate Martell continued doing what he does better than almost any college football player in America: he once again failed to earn a starting quarterback job.
On Monday of this week, Miami coach Manny Diaz announced that Jarren Williams, not Martell, would start at the quarterback position in the team’s opening game against Florida.
The proclamation was genuinely shocking for a lot of different reasons, but namely because of all the hype that had been surrounding Martell. It was considered all but a lock that he would start under center for a Miami team looking to make some noise this season.
Sure, there was some talk about how he was competing for the job with N’Kosi Perry, but given how lackluster his freshman campaign had been, nobody was really giving Perry much of a shot.
Instead, Martell, who previously transferred from Ohio State because he couldn’t crack the starting rotation, now finds himself in the exact same position all over again.
It is just stunning that someone who came into college with this much hoopla surrounding him — as Tate did courtesy of his high school showings — just cannot make a dent in the college ranks.
So what does this mean for all involved?
Well, it means that for the foreseeable future, Miami has its starter. It also means that Martell may be eyeing yet another transfer if he really wants to earn himself a starting job.
What are his options? There are a few.
One of Martell’s big strengths is that he is a mobile quarterback. When he was in high school, his ability to keep plays alive by scrambling out of bad situations was something that caught many people’s attention.
A marriage between that playing style and the offense Chip Kelly is sure to run at UCLA seems like a natural fit. Sure, the Bruins have Dorian Thompson-Robinson, but there is a reason why he was Martell’s backup in high school.
If not UCLA, another west coast-based option to consider is Arizona. Kevin Sumlin always had a soft spot for Martell’s playing style and only has one more year of Khalil Tate left. As he showed during his time at Texas A&M with Johnny Manziel, Sumlin knows how to make the most of a mobile quarterback.
Finally, if neither West Coast-option is viable for the San Diego-bred Martell, he could consider playing for Neal Brown up in West Virginia. According to multiple reports, Martell previously considered transferring to West Virginia before ultimately settling on Miami, so obviously there was mutual interest from both sides at some point in time. Besides, we literally just saw Will Grier resurrect what looked to be a doomed college career when he got his opportunity to suit up for the Mountaineers, so maybe lightning will strike twice in that regard.
Either way, though, it should be an interesting year for people who have been keeping an eye on Martell’s career since he was a highly-touted recruit Bishop Gorman High School. Back then, it seemed unfathomable that Thompson-Robinson, his backup, would earn a starting gig with a major college program before he would. And yet that is where we are right now.
Of course, the season hasn’t even started yet and we have no idea how Williams will perform. Maybe there is still hope yet for Martell if the guy who beat him for a starting gig gets off to a poor start.
Time will obviously tell, but you have to figure the Martell family is considering all their options right now.