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QB Cade McNamara Transferring from Michigan to Iowa

Graphic courtesy of Cade McNamara’s Twitter account

Former Michigan QB Cade McNamara, who entered the transfer portal earlier this week, is staying in the Big Ten and moving to Iowa.

ESPN’s Pete Thamel reported that McNamara will be transferring from Michigan to Iowa, and the QB made it official less than 40 minutes later.

McNamara played for coach Jim Harbaugh from 2019 through this past season.

In 2021, he started all 14 games of Michigan’s first Big Ten Championship year since 2003 and helped Michigan to its first playoff berth. He also became just the second Michigan QB to beat Ohio State since 2003. In a run-heavy offense, McNamara finished the season with 2,576 yards, 15 touchdown passes and six interceptions, completing 64.2% of his passes. In Michigan’s 21-17 win at Penn State Nov. 13 of last year, McNamara threw threw all three Michigan touchdowns and didn’t throw an interception, completing 19-29 passes for 217 yards. The last of his three touchdowns was a 47-yarder to tight end Erick All, who took advantage of a botched coverage attempt and scored the game-winner.

McNamara started this season in a battle with celebrated sophomore J.J. McCarthy. McNamara started the season-opener against Colorado State, and that ended up being his only start of this season. As pre-planned, McCarthy started the next week against Hawaii and never looked back. Michigan finished the regular season 12-0 and, if it beats Purdue in Saturday’s Big Ten Championship Game, will be in the Playoff for the second straight season.

If Iowa is his destination, McNamara will be staying in the Big Ten.

If McNamara is to become Iowa’s No. 1 QB, he’ll likely be starting against Penn State in Beaver Stadium next season. Iowa is scheduled to play Penn State in Happy Valley Sept. 23. There’s also a realistic chance Iowa is Penn State’s White Out game for 2023. Next to Michigan, Iowa is the most marquee Big Ten opponent on the home schedule, and the Michigan game could well be a Fox “Big Noon Kickoff,” as it was this season when the teams met in Ann Arbor.

Iowa finished its 2022 regular season 7-5, and would have won the Big Ten West if it beat Nebraska at home Friday, Nov. 25. It’s worth noting that, despite the winning record, Iowa’s offense finished the regular season second-to-last in the country in yards per game and in the bottom 10 in both points per game and passing yards per game.

Hawkeye fans are hoping both McNamara’s arrival and offensive coordinator Brian Ferentz’s departure— the latter of which hasn’t happened yet— will lead to more scoring in 2023.

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