Tate Martell will not be the starting quarterback at Miami. The dual-threat quarterback and former four-star recruit has had a crazy journey over the past few years. He was featured on the Netflix docuseries QB1: Beyond the Lights, then committed to a number of schools as a prep star, went to Ohio State, warned another quarterback not to transfer to Columbus, then opted to leave for Miami as soon as he did.
Now that Martell might be headed back into the Transfer Portal, here’s a look at some potential fits. It’s worth noting that Martell was granted immediate eligibility to play this year after his transfer from Ohio State. He’ll almost certainly have to sit out a year if he transfers again.
Martell can throw and run, and arguably the most consistent part of his game as a high schooler was his ability to scramble and make plays. UCLA head coach Chip Kelly made his money using guys like that at Oregon.
So far during his tenure at UCLA, Kelly has yet to land a player we truly fits his vision. Dorian Thompson-Robinson was Martell’s backup at Bishop Gorman High School and a highly-rated recruit in 2018. But he didn’t look great as a freshman for the Bruins and who knows if he’ll ever find consistency.
It would be a risk for Martell to head back West and attempt a quarterback competition with his old high school teammate. But it would mark a return to his home state (he grew up just outside San Diego) and his skillset is perfect for Kelly’s offense.
Maybe the second time would be the charm for Martell and Kevin Sumlin. As a high schooler, Martell was was committed to several schools and Texas A&M was one of them. Now, Sumlin is at Arizona and will be needing a quarterback when Khalil Tate graduates in 2020.
Sumlin clearly loves a quarterback with an attitude and he took a player of similar stature, and similar skills to a Heisman Trophy. I mean, yeah, that player was Johnny Manziel, but still. Arizona’s depth chart behind Tate is weak and Sumlin knows what Martell could bring to the table.
Will Grier turned his career around at West Virginia after a rough start at Florida. WVU has been a transfer haven over the years and Martell could team up with new coach Neal Brown to create a dynamic offense. Brown came to Morgantown from Troy, where he helped turn around a disaster of a program.
Based on tweets when he was transferring from Ohio State, Martell was considering West Virginia before he chose Miami. It wouldn’t be shocking for him to consider the Mountaineers again.
This would make a lot of sense, as Martell went to Bishop Gorman in Las Vegas, and UNLV’s head coach used to coach at Gorman. Tony Sanchez is certainly on the hot seat as he enters his fifth season on campus. He’s 16-32 overall and 11-21 in the Mountain West Conference.
During his time at Gorman, Martell played for Sanchez’s younger brother, Kenny. Obviously he knows the family and could help Sanchez elevate UNLV in a way he hasn’t been able to so far. Martell would also be the undisputed face of the entire athletic department in Vegas. He’d be a star if he played well.
San Diego State
More proof you can go home again. Martell grew up in Poway, California, a suburb of San Diego. After his freshman year of high school, he moved to Las Vegas to attend Bishop Gorman, but before that he was a San Diego kid.
I’m not sure San Diego State’s old-school coach Rocky Long would love Martell’s attitude, but he desperately needs improved quarterback play. Martell would be the best signal-caller the program has seen in more than a decade.