The quarterback race at the University of Miami just got a lot tighter.
Redshirt freshman Jack Allison, who sat out last year to learn the offensive system under coach Mark Richt while studying under NFL-bound quarterback Brad Kaaya, “has decided to leave the football program,’’ according to an email sent out by UM.
“Jack approached me and indicated that he felt like he would have more opportunities for playing time at another program,’’ Richt said. “We wish him all the best in his future plans.”
A former four-star recruit out of Parrish, Fla., Allison was listed at 6-5 and 200 pounds. He had a big arm that many believed would eventually lead to a starting spot at Miami.
But it was clear that he was not leading the quarterback race to replace Kaaya, as Richt said redshirt sophomore Evan Shirreffs and redshirt junior Malik Rosier are the co-No. 1s going into fall camp, when incoming dual-threat freshman N’Kosi Perry will compete for the job as well.
Also still competing for the job are true freshman Cade Weldon, an early enrollee, and walk-on redshirt junior Vincent Testaverde.
Allison injured his shoulder April 8 in the first spring scrimmage, when Richt allowed the quarterbacks to be tackled.
This past Saturday, when UM had its final scrimmage/game of the spring practice session, Allison played with the second-team offense. He had the most power behind his throws and finished Saturday with the best percentage completion: 11 of 15 for 100 yards and a 6-yard touchdown to Darrell Langham. But he also threw an interception.
When Richt was asked what Allison needed to do to approach the leaders in the quarterback race, Richt said, “It is just making good decisions, throwing to the right guy for the right reason. Putting them on target, putting it on the money if he has the opportunity to have the protection and field of vision.
“He’s certainly a guy who is going to make his career as a pocket passer. That is what he is – and a very talented pocket passer. So, when he gets opportunities, he has to stand there and rip it and put it on the money.’’
On Monday, Richt mentioned during an interview on WQAM-560 that Allison, as well as the other quarterback candidates, could “have a great summer and move up’’ on the depth chart.