Quarterback is by no means a settled position for Tennessee with spring practice quickly approaching.
The Vols have not yet offered a quarterback, according to Sports Illustrated’s Bruce Feldman. They are pursuing two signal callers in graduate transfers Gardner Minshew from East Carolina and Keller Chryst from Stanford.
Tennessee currently has two quarterbacks on its roster: redshirt sophomore Jarrett Guarantano and sophomore Will McBride. Both are spread quarterbacks, while offensive coordinator Tyson Helton plans to run a pro-style attack.
This is intriguing to Minshew, who would like to play meaningful snaps in his last season of college football.
“We’ve been talking a lot,” Minshew told Feldman about the Tennessee staff. “They want me to compete for the job in the spring.”
Minshew has graduated at ECU, so he can enroll at any time. Tennessee has mini-semesters, which would allow the 6-foot-1, 220-pound quarterback to be on campus fairly quickly.
“If it were to work out [at Tennessee], I’d be in school there next Thursday,” he says. “I feel like I fit what they do.”
Minshew threw for 2,140 yards, 16 touchdowns and 7 interceptions in 2017 as ECU finished with a 3-9 record.
Minshew has only one offer right now, from Alabama. He plans to visit Tuscaloosa, Ala., this weekend, and the Crimson Tide apparently are the favorites. Tennessee’s pitch surely includes a better chance at playing time this fall in Knoxville.
The Vols are hosting Chyrst this weekend. Chryst does not graduate until June, which would give him far less time with the team than Minshew.
Chryst threw for 962 yards, 8 touchdowns and 4 interceptions last season. The 6-5, 234-pound quarterback did not play in the final six games of the season after losing his job to K.J. Costello.
The coaching staff clearly believes it needs to bring in another quarterback. Minshew and Chryst are the likeliest options at this point.
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