If there’s one person to track in Michigan football not named Jim Harbaugh, it’s transfer quarterback Shea Patterson.
Patterson could be the Wolverines’ starting quarterback this season, but a lot is left to play out. He played well in limited time for Ole Miss before deciding to transfer to Michigan in 2017.
Here are 5 things to know about Patterson.
1. He may or may not be able to suit up for Michigan in 2018
Patterson left Ole Miss after last season and came to Michigan hoping to play right away as a junior rather than sit out one year per NCAA rules.
He claimed he was misled by the Rebels after sanctions were levied against the team after an investigation into recruiting practices.
As of now, Patterson is waiting for the NCAA to make its ruling, after Ole Miss objected to Michigan’s waiver request to let the quarterback play right away.
In March, though, Land of 10’s Sean Keeler spoke with legal experts who believed Patterson has a “great case” to play in 2018.
The NCAA can make its decision at any time, putting Patterson’s season in jeopardy ahead of the team’s spring game.
2. He saw limited time at Ole Miss in two seasons there
Patterson came to Ole Miss in 2016 and sat behind starter Chad Kelly before the latter tore an ACL with three games left in the season. The freshman quarterback then took the reigns, winning his first game and losing the last two.
In that season, Patterson threw for 880 yards and 6 touchdowns with 3 interceptions on 72 passing attempts. He also ran for 169 yards on 41 carries.
Last season, as the starter, Patterson started seven games, going 3-4 and throwing 260 times for 2,259 yards and 17 touchdowns to just nine interceptions before suffering a season-ending PCL tear.
3. He was a 5-star recruit out of high school
Patterson was the No. 3 recruit in the 2016 recruiting class. He was the No. 1 pro-style quarterback (and overall quarterback) in the class and was also the No. 1 recruit out of Florida, where he played at IMG Academy.
He had offers from a ton of schools, including Alabama, Arizona, Auburn, Notre Dame, USC, LSU and more.
4. If allowed to play, he will join a QB competition
The starting quarterback job will not be handed to Patterson should he be ruled eligible, nor will it be given to him in a year if he must wait.
Patterson will have to compete with Brandon Peters, Dylan McCaffrey and Joe Milton to earn the job. Peters saw time as the starter last year, playing in six games and throwing for 672 yards and 4 touchdowns. He’ll likely be the main competition.
Here’s what Land of 10’s Rachel Lenzi said Patterson needs to do to win the job:
“Patterson must play like he needs to earn this job,” Lenzi wrote. “But Patterson has been in this position before. He played for two seasons at Mississippi (3,139 yards, 23 touchdowns in 10 games), and he will prepare with the mentality that he will win the starting job…
At Michigan, he will have to work behind center, read defenses on his own and make quick decisions.
He will learn from his competition in Peters, McCaffrey and Milton. He’ll learn how to work with an offensive line that’s trying to find its identity. He’ll learn from NFL coaching products [Jim] Harbaugh and [Pep] Hamilton on what it will take for him to be successful as Michigan’s starter and as an NFL prospect.”
5. He hails from Shreveport, La., and comes from a sports family
Patterson transferred to IMG Academy for his senior year after leading Cavalry Baptist High School in Louisiana to two state titles.
He also comes from a sports family as his grandfather George Patterson played in the NBA for the Detroit Pistons and his older brother Sean is listed as a player personnel analyst for the football team at Ole Miss.