The Hurricanes officially welcomed ballyhooed new quarterback Tate Martell on campus Friday, and he’s set to begin classes in the coming days after leaving Ohio State.
But whether he plays for UM in 2019 will depend entirely on the NCAA.
Martell hired Travis Leach, a Phoenix-based attorney, to apply for a waiver from the NCAA to make Martell eligible this season.
Typically, transfers who have not graduated are required to sit out a season with their new school.
“I feel he’s got a really good chance,” Leach told the Miami Herald by phone on Friday. “There are really good facts on Tate’s side, but you don’t know until you get all the facts and get feedback from the NCAA.
“I feel there are facts there that are persuasive for the NCAA. I think we can make a compelling case that it was in the best interest to Tate that he transferred.”
Leach will raise the Ohio State coaching change from Urban Meyer to Ryan Day, but he said Martell’s bid for a waiver will go beyond that.
“I think there are a lot of things with [a coaching change] that impact the well-being of the athlete and the mental state [of an athlete],” he said. “All of the things that go into it and dynamics interpersonally go into that.”
Leach said he’s not sure of a timeline for the process but he “hopes for resolution as quickly as possible to know his position going into the spring. We would like to do it as quickly as possible. It’s a collaborative process with UM.”
The Columbus Dispatch reported last week that Martell was on track to graduate in May and be eligible to play for UM in 2019. But that isn’t going to happen, with Martell leaving Columbus, Ohio, this week to enroll at Miami. The Associated Press reported that he needs more than a semester to graduate.
“It was pretty wild and quick,” Martell told the AP on Thursday of his move from Ohio State to Miami. “But it was something I needed to get done, obviously, in a short time. And with school starting, I had to get it done fast. I’m just happy to be where I’m at now, focused on going and competing down here and doing my thing.”
Rivals rated Martell the No. 2 dual-threat quarterback and No. 39 overall prospect in the 2017 recruiting class. He redshirted as a freshman and completed 23 of 28 passes as a backup for Ohio State last season.
UM added a fifth quarterback to the roster Friday when Carson Proctor enrolled at Miami as a walk-on.
Proctor began his career as a walk-on at Arkansas, playing for UM offensive coordinator Dan Enos, who at that time was the Razorbacks’ offensive coordinator. He didn’t throw a pass at Arkansas and enrolled last year at Coffeyville Community College.
Per the school’s website, Proctor threw for 1,117 yards with 11 touchdowns, seven interceptions and a 47.8 completion percentage.
He was a two-star prospect coming out of Vero Beach High, where he guided the team to an undefeated regular season as a senior.
His addition means UM will have at least five quarterbacks barring transfers — N’Kosi Perry, Jarren Williams, Martell, Cade Weldon and Proctor. UM also is pursuing New Orleans-based Class of 2019 quarterback Lance Legendre.
Parents of Williams and Perry said this week that their sons intend to remain at UM in light of Martell’s addition.