The Wolverine

March 2018

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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74 THE WOLVERINE MARCH 2018 O le Miss transfer quarterback Shea Patterson is officially part of the Michigan football program, but he's still in wait-and-see mode when it comes to 2018 eligibility. Pat- terson has filed an appeal with the NCAA to waive the transfer rule that would require him to sit out a year, hopeful to play this fall. There have been reports that Pat- terson would know in March or April, but Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh said Feb. 7 he wasn't sure when he'd receive word from the NCAA. "I don't have any update on the calendar," he said. reported that di- rect messages and texts would play a big part in Patterson's and other Ole Miss players' cases. Patterson claims former Ole Miss coach Huge Freeze lied during his recruitment about an NCAA investigation and how that might affect the program. Since then, the Rebels self-imposed a bowl ban this past season, while the NCAA added a bowl ban for this upcoming season. Thomas Mars, an Arkansas attor- ney representing the players, insisted in the report there is substantial proof Freeze misled the players when they were recruits. "It's an open and shut case is what happened," Mars said. cited a Jan. 16 screen shot in which Freeze appeared to mistakenly text a recruit a link to a positive story regarding the NCAA investigation that had just begun. "Good PR response … get this in the recruits' hands," it read. The NCAA ruled six football coaches and 12 boosters were in- volved in the violations. Ole Miss is appealing the penalties, but Freeze resigned in July after phone records indicated he had called an escort ser- vice during a recruiting visit. "The most impressive thing Hugh Freeze could do to win back respect from people in college football is to say these players shouldn't be penal- ized," Mars said of Patterson and the other Ole Miss transfers. "It's become, I think, virtually undeni- able these players were intentionally misled." Patterson, a former five-star pros- pect out of Bradenton (Fla.) IMG Academy, has two years of eligibility remaining. He threw for 880 yards as a true freshman and completed 166 of 260 passes for 2,259 yards with 17 touchdowns and nine intercep- tions as a sophomore in only seven games, going down midseason with an injury. Patterson will battle redshirt sophomore Brandon Peters and red- shirt freshman Dylan McCaffrey for the right to start, but ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. believes Patterson is the quarterback that could get Michigan over the top. He said on his weekly "Dari and Mel" podcast with Dari Nowkhah Feb. 12 that Patterson would be "critical to whether this team will be in the mix." "He's got a ton of talent. There's a lot of talent, I think, at Michigan that they can win with," Kiper con- tinued. "When you look at the de- fensive side, with [defensive ends Rashan] Gary and [Chase] Winovich and [linebacker Devin] Bush and [cornerbacks David] Long and La- vert Hill, they've got a lot of good players. "I know the recruiting classes haven't wowed anybody over, but I think if Shea Patterson is under cen- ter, Michigan could catapult into the top 10 … maybe the top six." — Chris Balas ASSISTANT COACH DAN ENOS LEAVES FOR ALABAMA Seventeen days. That's how long assistant coach Dan Enos' tenure at Michigan lasted, the former Michigan State quarter- back leaving the program to join head coach Nick Saban at Alabama, where he'll be quarterbacks coach and, according to some reports, asso- ciate head coach and/or co-offensive coordinator. Michigan head coach Jim Har-   MICHIGAN FOOTBALL Shea Patterson Still Waiting On Appeal To Play Immediately Patterson's appeal to the NCAA hinges on the claim that former Ole Miss head coach Huge Freeze misled him and other recruits about an NCAA investigation and how it might affect the program. PHOTO BY BRANDON BROWN

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