Arizona Wildcats quarterback Brandon Dawkins announced Thursday evening that he will transfer after graduating in May.
This was not an unexpected development. Dawkins told the Star in December that he wasn’t sure about his future beyond the 2017 season. Dawkins started for most of 2016 and the beginning of ’17 before losing the job to Khalil Tate, who led the Wildcats on a four-game winning streak and set several QB rushing records.
Tate is entering his junior year. Barring an injury, he will be Arizona’s starter for at least one more season. Dawkins could have stayed and served as the No. 2 QB. Instead, he’s transferring. As a grad transfer, he can play immediately for another FBS school.
Dawkins appeared in 22 games, passing for 2,418 yards with 15 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. He rushed for 1,582 yards and 20 TDs. Dawkins ran for 944 yards and 10 scores in 2016.
“The past four years have been nothing short of phenomenal,” Dawkins said via Twitter. “I would like to thank the U of A for the chance to not only play the sport I love, but have the opportunity to get my degree.”
ARIZONA. The past 4 years have been nothing short of phenomenal. I would like to thank the U of A for the chance to not only play the sport I love, but have the opportunity to get my degree. With that being said, I will be a graduate transfer after I graduate this May. #BearDown pic.twitter.com/ibnvp7wbKh— Brandon Dawkins (@BDawks) February 23, 2018
Dawkins’ position coach throughout his UA career, Rod Smith, is now the offensive coordinator at Illinois. Another ex-Wildcats assistant, Calvin Magee, is the offensive coordinator at New Mexico. Those are two possible destinations for Dawkins, along with Hawaii, where Dawkins was born.
Arizona also could lose reserve quarterback Rhett Rodriguez. His father, Rich Rodriguez, was fired as UA coach Jan. 2. Rhett Rodriguez remains with the team and plans to participate in spring practice as of now.
New coach Kevin Sumlin and his staff began restocking the position by signing two quarterbacks for the class of 2018 – Cienega’s Jamarye Joiner and Kevin Doyle of St. John’s College High in Washington, D.C.
But unless Arizona brings in a transfer, all of Tate’s backups will enter 2018 with zero college game experience. The UA has one other scholarship quarterback on the roster – K’Hari Lane, who redshirted as a freshman last year.