It’s been a mere 24 hours or so since Duke granted Brandon Collette a scholarship release, so there’s no decision been made as to where the quarterback may transfer. We can, though, likely cross one potential destination off the list. Probably.
Citing a source with knowledge of the situation, the San Jose Mercury News reported Thursday that Connette will not be transferring to San Jose State and playing for the Spartans. Connette’s brother, Simon, is a junior safety at SJSU, leading to early speculation that the Mountain West school would be his primary focus, at least early on.
According to the Mercury News, however, there are football reasons why the one-year marriage — Connette will be a graduate transfer for his final season of collegiate eligibility — wouldn’t work.
…it would be tough for him with the Spartans. Spring practice is already complete, so getting him up to speed with the offense would be difficult.
With Joe Gray looking to be the leader to win the starting QB job, Connette could be seen as a valuable running threat at the position similar to how he was used at Duke. But the issue there is Blake Jurich is viewed as the guy to serve in that role and there’s a reluctance to move the fifth-year senior out of that spot to bring in a new player.
Connette is looking to transfer to a program in the state of California to be close to his ailing mother, who was diagnosed with brain cancer this past December.
With SJSU apparently not part of the transfer equation, the focus on a possible landing spot will shift to Fresno State and San Diego State, two schools that were mentioned as possibilities by the Wilmington News-Star. There would be an opportunity for Connette to come in and win a starting job at both places as the latter is looking to replace likely NFL first-round draft pick Derek Carr while the presumptive front-runner for the latter, Quinn Kaehler, missed spring practice after undergoing elbow surgery.
Connette was offered a scholarship by Stanford during his high school recruitment, although it’s unknown if the Cardinal would maintain any interest in the player.