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Michigan awaits a ruling from the NCAA on quarterback Shea Patterson's eligibility for the 2018 season.

QB Shea Patterson will give Michigan football boost of confidence in 2018

Rachel Lenzi

During the week, Land of 10 reporters following the Wolverines answer questions on the minds of Michigan fans. Submit a question or suggest a topic by sending a tweet here to Rachel Lenzi or here to Kevin Goheen. Check back Monday through Friday as we answer the Michigan Question of the Day. Go here to see our previous answers.

If Shea Patterson is ruled eligible for this fall, what will he bring to the football program? — David LaBute, via Facebook

The NCAA hasn’t announced a ruling regarding Shea Patterson’s request for a waiver so that he can immediately play at Michigan this fall. If the NCAA grants that waiver, Patterson will bring several strong qualities to the Wolverines.

His new teammates have praised him for his athleticism, his mobility, his skills in working behind the center, and his ability and willingness to leave the pocket. We’ll get our first look at Patterson in a Wolverines uniform Saturday when Michigan hosts its annual spring game at Michigan Stadium.

Patterson easily brings the most experience to the 2018 quarterback pool. Patterson threw for 3,139 yards and 23 touchdowns and was intercepted 12 times in 10 games at Ole Miss in 2016 and 2017.

Most notably, Patterson will bring what some of his teammates consider a certain confidence.

Or, as defensive end Rashan Gary put it, “He’s swaggy.”

At least one coach also has high confidence in Patterson: defensive coordinator Don Brown

“Competition’s a beautiful thing,” Brown said in March. “I expect great things from him.”

The 6-foot-2, 203-pound Patterson is one of four quarterbacks taking part in spring practices, joining Brandon Peters, Dylan McCaffrey and Joe Milton.

While his eligibility remains in question, Patterson is heightening the competition among the Wolverines’ quarterbacks. Many already have penciled Patterson in as Michigan’s starting quarterback — even without that ruling from the NCAA — but running back Chris Evans is seeing how at least one quarterback is responding to having an experienced player in the fold.

“As long as I’ve known Brandon [Peters], I know he’s always going to step up to the challenge,” Evans said. “That’s what he’s doing so far. He’s out there making plays. He’s out there having fun.”

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