ESPN NFL Draft analyst Mel Kiper may have just made the hearts of every Michigan football fan skip a beat.
On the Dari and Mel radio show with SEC Network anchor Dari Nowkhah on Tuesday, both Kiper and Nowkhah the two put together lists of their top 6 teams for the upcoming college football season. Kiper ranked Michigan as his No. 6 team, but with one condition:
Quarterback and Ole Miss transfer Shea Patterson has to eligible to play in 2018 for the Wolverines to finish in the top 6 at season’s end.
“I’m going to throw in a player that is critical to whether this team will be in the mix [as a top-6 team],” Kiper said. “Shea Patterson is on campus, he’s enrolled in Michigan, he’s been there since January. Will he be available to play at Michigan this year? That’s not decided yet, still an unknown. If not, it’s Brandon Peters, Dylan McCaffrey kind of vying for that job. [Patterson] has a ton of talent, I think talent at Michigan that they can win with.”
Kiper also praised Michigan’s stout defense. He said that Michigan’s defense paired with Patterson behind center will lead to tremendous success in Ann Arbor.
“[Michigan’s] got a lot of players,” Kiper said.
“If Shea Patterson is under center, I think Michigan could catapult into the top 10,” he added. “Maybe into the top 6.”
However, as Kiper states, Michigan is still unsure on whether Patterson will be eligible to play this season. Patterson and several other players from Ole Miss transferred, claiming that former coach Hugh Freeze misled them about the NCAA hitting the university with sanctions.
As a result, Patterson and the players that transferred are looking for immediate eligibility this upcoming season. Normally when a player transfers, they are forced to sit out one season before being able to play. But there is a chance these particular transfers will be granted immediate eligibility.
If Patterson is eligible for the 2018 college football season, there is a chance the Kiper’s bold prediction will be accurate.
To listen to the full podcast, click HERE.