Football Recruiting

Kentucky Quarterback Gunnar Hoak In The Transfer Portal

Kentucky Wildcats Transfer Quarterback Gunnar Hoak

Gunnar Hoak, who played quarterback for Kentucky the last three seasons, has entered his name in the NCAA Transfer Portal.

Hoak is a native of Dublin, Ohio, just outside Columbus. He could also be an almost perfect fit for Ohio State.

Hoak posted the news to his Twitter account on Tuesday morning.

With Matthew Baldwin now in the Transfer Portal, the Buckeyes are now down to just two quarterbacks for this season: Justin Fields and Chris Chugunov.

Hoak is graduating from UK in May, so he will be immediately eligible to play this fall.

He has two seasons of eligibility left. He also comes from a family with deep Ohio State ties.

His dad, Frank Hoak, played at Ohio State under Earle Bruce. His uncle is Fred Pagac, the former OSU player and assistant coach, and his cousin is Freddie Pagac, an OSU linebacker from 1999-2003.

Gunnar Hoak came to Ohio State football camps while he was the quarterback at Dublin Coffman High School, but didn’t get a scholarship offer from the Buckeyes.

So he went to Kentucky instead. He redshirted in 2016 and didn’t see the field in 2017.

Last fall, Hoak appeared in four games for the Wildcats, going 13-for-26 for 167 yards, two touchdowns and an interception.

He had a big day at Kentucky’s 2019 Spring Game, completing 23 of 30 passes for 262 yards and two touchdowns.

With 2018 starting quarterback Terry Wilson returning, it was going to be an uphill climb for Hoak to win the starting job for 2019.

However, he could be a perfect fit for the 2019 and 2020 Ohio State teams.

He would provide this year’s Buckeyes with a third scholarship quarterback, something the program desperately needs.

He has the experience of playing major college football for three seasons.

Given his family ties to the program, he might be more willing than most transfers to come to OSU without a clear path to the starting job.

And he would also be around for 2020, a year when the Buckeyes still need to add at least one more quarterback.

If he comes to OSU, Hoak wouldn’t immediately vault to the top of the Heisman Trophy odds like Justin Fields did. But he would provide experienced, veteran depth at a position where the Buckeyes need it.

And given his family ties to the program, and two years of eligibility remaining, he seems like a nearly perfect fit.

10 Responses

  1. We need to recognize something. These days college football players are basically concerned with their own careers. Not a criticism, just an observation. So, no matter how they are recruited, if they come to believe that they will not play a significant role in the program, they want to leave. The “transfer portal” provides that opportunity. The days of school loyalty seem to have faded away.

  2. It’s the closest thing the kids have to free agency – I’m all for it personally. The kid played out his rookie deal and now its off to see where he fits best – whether its to legitimately compete for a starting gig or to add depth and get a free Masters at the school of your choice (or close to it) is a good thing. In addition, he/they might play the what if game – ala Car Dale Jones. If it happens that your number is called and you’ve been under the tutelage of Day and the new guy – it could pay off at least with an invite as an undrafted free agent to an NFL camp.

  3. This kid has barely played College Football. Fact is, we put all our eggs in the Fields basket alienating QBs we had recruited, developed and invested in…and I am ok with that given Fields’ upside. However, going after Fields the way we did and giving him the job the way we did comes at a price..and that price is if Fields goes down, we are screwed. Getting Gunnar doesn’t change that one bit.

      1. If what you’re saying here is true (and I’ve no reason to doubt it) then we haven’t recruited QBs well (one view) or we’ve recruited them TOO well (that kind of desire to play is both admirable and can sink a program when “the man” goes down).

        1. If you’re choosing between those two, it’s the latter.

          But this isn’t just an OSU problem. Kentucky has had two quarterbacks put their names in the Transfer Portal this offseason, both with OSU ties.

          In addition to Hoak, they also lost former OSU commit Danny Clark this offseason. That means they have one quarterback on their roster who has taken a college snap.

          That’s becoming the new normal at a lot of places.

          1. I’m inclined to agree with you that it’s the latter, Tom, but buckle up! College football is in for a wild ride!

        2. Right. Sounds good in hindsight… and even more you don’t have to provide support or evidence for the assertion. Bringing in Fields and handing him the job ran them off, and I am ok with that. You can save the spin.

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