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Brady Hoke expects QB Devin Gardner to open season as starter

Devin Gardner

The Michigan Wolverines disappointed last season, and plenty of blame fell at the feet of starting quarterback Devin Gardner.

Gardner has been pushed this offseason by sophomore Shane Morris, but Michigan head coach Brady Hoke still envisions Gardner as the team’s starting quarterback.

“I would expect him to start on the 30th (against Appalachian State),” Hoke told the Detroit Free Press’ Mark Snyder.

Gardner struggled at times last season, particularly early in the year during near-catastrophic losses to Akron and Connecticut. The upperclassman did improve as the season progressed, which should have been expected from a first-year starter. Gardner finished the season with 21 touchdowns compared to 11 interceptions, and his best effort came against the hated Buckeyes. The quarterback threw for 451 yards and four touchdowns against that team from Ohio.

But Morris was a highly decorated recruit, and he’s considered the future of the program.

“I feel like I’m ready to be the starting quarterback at Michigan, definitely,” Morris told GoBlueWolverine.com’s Kyle Bogenschutz Sunday during Michigan’s media day. “But Devin’s also a great quarterback and he’s been here a long time and we’re both pushing each other to be the best we can be.”

Both Gardner and Morris were given a fresh start under Michigan’s new offensive coordinator Doug Nussmeier. Nussmeier spent the previous two seasons with Alabama and prefers a pro style offense, which isn’t necessarily the best fit for Gardner.

“A lot more responsibility is put on the quarterback in this offense,” Morris described. “We have to know a lot more about the line and what everyone’s doing and it’s definitely helping us understand the whole entire offense more so, it’s very good for us and it’s going to help our offense be the best it can be.”

While Gardner will likely begin the season atop Michigan’s quarterback depth chart, he should expect Hoke to have a quick hook if he starts to struggle at any point. Morris is going to take over as the face of the program sooner or later. It’s up to Gardner to determine exactly when that happens.

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10 Responses to “Brady Hoke expects QB Devin Gardner to open season as starter”
  1. barkleyblows says: Aug 12, 2014 8:23 PM

    Bahahaha another terrible season for michigan. I love it!!

    Go blow!!!

  2. blazerofthenorth says: Aug 12, 2014 8:38 PM

    Why?

  3. polegojim says: Aug 12, 2014 8:40 PM

    Go Gettem Dev – make it great!

  4. navigator24 says: Aug 12, 2014 8:43 PM

    Smart move…if Gardner messes up, you can always go with Morris.

    If you start off with Morris and he messed up, you look like an idiot.

  5. brianincbus says: Aug 12, 2014 9:24 PM

    I expect scUM to go 7-5 or 8-4 and lose to tOSU

  6. txspartan95 says: Aug 12, 2014 9:30 PM

    And the rest of the B1G once again point to AA and start snickering….

  7. dmarado says: Aug 12, 2014 10:11 PM

    The guy is a senior and should have his position locked down. The fact Hoke has to question this doesn’t bode well for Gardner.

  8. BrownsTown says: Aug 12, 2014 10:23 PM

    I’m 86% certain it’s #98 because that’s the year he graduated from high school.

  9. brownsmakemecrazy says: Aug 13, 2014 5:27 AM

    Wow if this guy is your starting QB, then you are going to be avg at best. Amazes me how these stupid coaches think running QBs that cant pass are going to win consistently and win the National Championship.

  10. brownsmakemecrazy says: Aug 13, 2014 5:29 AM

    Comical how Michigan was so anxious to oust Lloyd Carr and they have sucked ever since he left. Be careful what you wish for.

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